Under the current law, abortion would be banned completely if Roe v. Wade were overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court.
The effort to decriminalize abortion is part of a broader push in states that have laws banning the procedure, such as Massachusetts, which repealed its law in July 2018. Those who are in favor of abortion rights are moving to remove laws that would go into effect if abortion were once again left to the states to decide.
"Should Roe v. Wade ever be overturned...I am in agreement that criminalization of abortion should not target women, many of whom find themselves in personally or financially dire circumstances," Wall clarified.
"But abortion also targets and victimizes another deeply vulnerable population: unborn children and future generations. Our state must strive to protect and uphold the dignity of all peoples, from conception to natural death, and any effort to permit the killing of unborn children violates the sanctity of every human person, mother and child."
Rep. Joanne Ferrary (D-Las Cruces) introduced the bill, along with Georgene Louis (D-Acoma). The proposed bill is supported by the state's new Democratic governor, Michelle Lujan Grisham, as well as the state's House Speaker and Senate majority leader. The legislative leaders have tabbed the bill as a "high priority" for the current legislative session, and Lujan Grisham has pledged to sign the bill into law if it passes the legislature.
Wall encouraged New Mexico's lawmakers to focus on policies and legislation to "promote the prosperity of human life at all stages of development" rather than promoting abortion.