Last week, the Legislative Session continued with multiple committee hearing and events. Much is happening—some good, some bad, and some ugly.
The GOOD – Pro Life Legislation Introduced
Although Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham has not yet placed abortion legislation on the Session agenda, Representative Rod Montoya (R-San Juan) has introduced pro-life legislation aimed at ending late-term abortion up-to-birth, banning infanticide, and requiring parental notification when a minor obtains an abortion. House Bills 208, 209, and 210 cannot be considered without a message from the Governor. Therefore, we encourage you to call the Governor’s Office today and ask her to, “Please put House Bills 208, 209, and 210 on the Session agenda.” Although you may feel this is a waste of time, we assure you—it is not. Last year, we made our voices heard by the thousands, and the Governor must continue to hear from us. Please call the Governor’s Office at (505) 476-2200 today!
The BAD – Recreational Weed Advances & Speaker Ends Clergy-Led Prayer
On Tuesday, our Executive Director, Vince Torres, partnered with law enforcement, business community leaders, the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, and our national ally SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana) at a press conference to express shared and serious concerns about the negative impacts of recreational marijuana. The group then offered testimony in the Senate Public Affairs Committee in opposition to SB115 which would legalize recreational pot in New Mexico. The committee subsequently advanced SB115 on a 4-3 party-line vote with all Republicans voting in opposition to the bill. SB115 now heads to the Senate Judiciary Committee where it faces an uncertain outcome. Please stay tuned for an Action Alert asking you to contact the Judiciary Committee members!
Last week, Speaker of the House Brian Egolf (D-Santa Fe) ended the longstanding tradition of having local clergy deliver the daily invocation. For more than a century in New Mexico, local priests, pastors, and other faith leaders have been invited to the Senate and House Chambers to begin each daily session in prayer. In the House, however, this will no longer be the case. Instead, members of the House will now deliver the daily invocation. Representative Gregg Schmedes (R-Bernalillo, Sandoval, & Santa Fe) noted: “Leaders of all faiths should be welcome in the Roundhouse to offer prayer. By closing our doors to priests, pastors, and faith leaders, House leadership is sending the wrong message to the faith community.”
The UGLY – Two House Democrats Table Sex Offender Bill
On Tuesday of last week, another disturbing maneuver took place, as Democrats in a House Committee voted to table a bipartisan bill (HB43) aimed at closing a dangerous loophole in our Sex Offender Registry laws. Representative Andrea Romero (D-Santa Fe) and Representative Angelica Rubio (D-Dona Ana) refused to advance HB43 even after hearing compelling testimony regarding the loophole that allowed convicted sex offender, Jeffrey Epstein, to avoid registration in New Mexico because he was convicted in another state.
On to Week 3
The Legislative Session continues this week and, as always, we will be working hard to keep you updated on important legislation impacting life, families, and religious freedom. Please stay tuned for Action Alerts and other opportunities for you to engage in the process and make your voice heard.
Thank you for your continued prayers and support!
The Family Policy Alliance of New Mexico Team