NM AG: Proposed Abortion Ban Is Unenforceable
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A proposed ban on late-term abortions in Albuquerque is unenforceable and would run afoul of the state and U.S. constitutions, the state attorney general said Wednesday.
Anti-abortion groups gathered more than double the signatures necessary to force a Nov. 19 election on the issue in New Mexico’s largest city in an attempt to shutter Southwestern Women’s Options, one of the few clinics in the country offering abortions into the third trimester of pregnancy.
But some city councilors have sought to keep the question off the ballot, arguing it is not a local issue.
Attorney General Gary King weighed in on the matter in a letter Wednesday to Albuquerque City Council member Trudy Jones, who had asked King for a formal ruling.
King says only state officials can seek a formal opinion, but he issued the letter because “voters have the right to know and decide whether they want to bear the protracted expense of litigation over a measure that is unconstitutional and unenforceable.”
“Additionally, recent federal court actions have struck down ordinances identical or similar to the proposed measure in Albuquerque,” he said.