This story is a staff report from The Paper.

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham signed an executive order this morning putting a $10 million “full-spectrum” reproductive healthcare clinic in front of the 2023 legislature. The clinic is proposed to be located in Doña Ana County, (most likely near Las Cruces) and near the Texas border. The facility will provide access to family planning including abortion for New Mexico women and for Texans and other women from outlying states who are now denied that medical service.

MLG’s order would strengthen New Mexico’s standing in the abortion wars as a state where women can exercise their rights to all reproductive services including birth control, post-natal care, and “appropriate medical management of miscarriage and pregnancy loss.” Those services include abortion which also can be a treatment for problem pregnancies.

The gov declared, in part: “Abortion is an essential part of reproductive healthcare and must remain legal, safe, and accessible; New Mexico has recently implemented additional measures to protect reproductive rights and access to reproductive health care services such as repealing an antiquated state statute criminalizing abortion; Whereas, I have also issued and executive order to protect access to reproductive health care services in New Mexico.”

The governor is asking the legislature for the following:

A designation of $10 million for the upcoming 2023 legislative session for the purpose of developing a new clinic that provides a full spectrum of patient-centered, community-informed reproductive healthcare, including abortion, in Dona Aña County; 

MLG is also asking the Department of Health to develop a detailed plan to leverage state resources to expand access to reproductive healthcare, including abortion, in underserved areas of the State and assess the feasibility of the provision of medication abortion in public health. 

Abortion access is a hot-ticket item in elections around the country and here in NM. New Mexico is one of a few states where abortion is legal in all states of pregnancy, and Lujan Grisham has championed efforts to increase access to reproductive care for women from neighboring states. Mark Ronchetti has said as governor he would support a ban on abortion after 15 weeks with exceptions for rape, incest and cases when a pregnant woman’s life is at risk.

If passed, it would be the only state-funded reproductive health clinic.