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Tags: arizona legislature | abortion ban repeal

Ariz. Lawmakers Backing Abortion Repeal Lose Committee Spots

By    |   Wednesday, 24 April 2024 08:58 PM EDT

Two lawmakers in the Arizona House, one from each party, were booted from key committee assignments Wednesday after they voted with the majority to repeal the state’s 1864 abortion ban.

State Rep. Matt Gress, 1 of 3 Republicans to vote with Democrats to repeal the law, was removed from the Appropriations Committee and Democrat Rep. Oscar De Los Santos was removed from the Appropriations and Rules committees, The Hill reported Wednesday.

Earlier Wednesday, the House voted 32-28 to repeal the law that calls for a near-total ban on the procedure, except to save the life of the mother. It also calls for criminal penalties for anyone who helps a woman get an abortion.

After the Arizona Supreme Court ruled the 1864 law was constitutional, former President Donald Trump and Republican U.S. Senate candidate Keri Lake called for the law to be repealed.

If the proposed repeal passes the GOP-controlled Senate and is signed into law by Democrat Gov. Katie Hobbs, a 2022 statute banning the procedure after 15 weeks of pregnancy would become the prevailing abortion law.

The Hill reported it tried to reach Gress for comment regarding his removal from the Appropriations Committee. Gress did post a statement on X regarding his vote to repeal the law.

"As someone who is both Pro-Life and the product of strong women in my life, I refuse to buy into the false notion pushed by the extremes on both sides of the issue that we cannot respect and protect women and defend new life at the same time," Gress wrote.

State Reps. Tim Dunn and Justin Wilmeth were the other Republicans who voted with Democrats to repeal the ban.

"I find it shameful that the Republicans are retaliating against me for speaking out for reproductive freedom," De Los Santos told The Hill. "I will not be silenced. I will not be intimidated."

Newsmax reached out to Arizona House Speaker Ben Toma for comment on the removal of Gress and De Los Santos from committees.

Several Republicans who supported the 1864 abortion ban expressed frustration with their colleagues who crossed party lines to repeal the law.

"I am disgusted today," Republican state Rep. Rachel Jones said, according to The Washington Post. "Life is one of the tenets of our Republican platform. To see people go back on that value is egregious to me."

Republicans hold a two-seat majority (16-14) in the Senate, meaning two GOP senators would have to join with Democrats to repeal the law. The Senate is moving forward with an identical version of the repeal bill, the Post reported, signaling the GOP could support the bill approved by the House. The earliest the Senate could vote on the House version is May 1, based on the chamber’s schedule.

Michael Katz

Michael Katz is a Newsmax reporter with more than 30 years of experience reporting and editing on news, culture, and politics.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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Two lawmakers in the Arizona House, one from each party, were booted from key committee assignments Wednesday after they voted with the majority to repeal the state’s 1864 abortion ban.
arizona legislature, abortion ban repeal
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2024-58-24
Wednesday, 24 April 2024 08:58 PM
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