On Wednesday morning, the Town of Edgewood passed an ordinance to ensure compliance with the federal Comstock Act, which prohibits the illicit transport of “abortion pills” or “abortion-related paraphernalia.”
During a meeting, state Rep. Matthew McQueen (D-Galisteo) threatened to yank funding from the Town of Edgewood if it passed the pro-life ordinance, according to attendees present and members of the public.
“I’m just going to have to reconsider how I allocate my capital outlay,” said McQueen, referring to funds legislators have for projects in their districts. In 2023, each legislator got $2,510,000 to spend.
Edgewood Commissioner Ken Brennan of District One clapped back at the lawmaker, “Is that a threat?”
McQueen responded, “Well if you want to take it that way.”
The Democrat lawmaker is also reported to have said, “I have 30,000 constituents, and Edgewood is insignificant.”
Present at the meeting were Mayor Audrey Jaramillo, Commissioners Jerry Powers, Filandro R. Anaya, Ken Brennan, Sterling Donner, state Rep. Stefani Lord (R-Sandia Park), and others.
During the consideration of the ordinance, Rep. Andrea Romero (D-Santa Fe) testified in opposition to its passage, while pro-life Reps. Lord and John Block (R-Alamogordo) and Sen. David Gallegos (R-Eunice) testified in support. McQueen left the meeting before public comment.
The Town Commission passed the ordinance early Wednesday morning by a 4-1 vote, with Commissioner Anaya being the only vote against it. Edgewood’s move comes after other pro-life localities, including the Cities of Eunice, Hobbs, and Clovis, also passed similar ordinances.
Because the ordinance is based on federal laws and not state laws, it supersedes recent legislation, including H.B. 7, attempting to ban localities from regulating abortion.
In New Mexico, abortion is legal up to the date of birth without exceptions.
Rep. McQueen did not respond to a Friday request for comment. We afforded him the entire weekend to respond, but he has not yet since reached out to comment on the matter.