Albuquerque Voters to Consider Anti-Choice OrdinancePosted: September 18, 2013
In a November special election, Albuquerque, New Mexico voters will decide whether or not the city will become the first in the nation to pass a ban on abortions performed after 20 weeks.
The city council, in a 5-4 vote, approved the measure to appear on the November ballot after none of the council members agreed to approve the anti-choice restriction themselves. As a result, voters will have the power to decide whether or not to pass the so-called “Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Ordinance.”
This restrictive and over-generalized anti-choice measure follows the model of similar national and state legislation, all of which is supposedly backed by the claim that fetuses can feel pain at about 20 weeks. The so-called science behind these claims, however, is highly unsubstantiated. And this legislation would greatly harm the small number of women who seek late term abortions, who largely do so for health reasons.
In addition to restricting the health of Albuquerque women, the ban itself directly contradicts Supreme Court precedent. This year, the courts have already struck down 20-week bans in a number of states, including Arizona and Utah. Constitutionality, however, does not appear to be a concern for the anti-choice movement, nor does the high taxpayer cost of approving and then defending such legislation.