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Supreme Court Abortion Decision Ripples In N.M.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM
Joan Lamunyon Sanford, director of the New Mexico Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice

Abortion rights supporters in New Mexico are thrilled with the Supreme Court’s ruling today, but it might not immediately reduce the number of women coming here from Texas for abortions. 

Joan Lamunyon Sanford is with the New Mexico Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. It’s a network of volunteers that provides food and shelter for women from other states who come here for abortions. Lately, that’s included a lot of women from neighboring Texas. "For us, it’s not going to get worse," she said. "We’re not sure if it’s going to get better—yet. It’s going to take some time to see, and some investment with resources for clinics that had to shut down to re-open. Hopefully some of them can."

Sanford said the ruling sends a clear message that the justices saw the over-regulation of clinics in Texas for what it really is: an attempt to restrict abortion access. She added that she remains concerned about the extreme views coming from the religious right that dominate this debate.

Opponents are criticizing the high court’s decision. New Mexico’s Rep. Steve Pearce said on social media that the decision puts mothers and the "unborn" at risk. 

Marisa Demarco began a career in radio at KUNM News in late 2013 and covered public health for much of her time at the station. During the pandemic, she is also the executive producer for Your NM Government and No More Normal, shows focused on the varied impacts of COVID-19 and community response, as well as racial and social justice. She joined Source New Mexico as editor-in-chief in 2021.
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