New Mexico

During this session, New Mexico Democrats pushed for several bills that expanded voting rights in the state. In big successes for voter accessibility, New Mexico passed a bill (SB 672) to expand early and automatic voter registration. Great news for New Mexicans! The state also passed an election tune-up bill (HB 407), that primarily makes smaller fixes to elections, but also should improve poll accessibility. New Mexico also enacted a campaign finance reform bill (SB 3) that should improve election and fundraising transparency.

One major piece of legislation that ultimately fell short this session was a bill to restore voting rights to individuals with felony convictions – even if they were incarcerated. If the bill (HB 57) had passed, New Mexico would have joined Maine and Vermont as the only states to completely prohibit disenfranchising otherwise-eligible citizens due to felony records. No citizen should have their right to vote stripped, even if they have committed a crime. We hope New Mexico Democrats will continue to advocate for the voting rights of all citizens.

Democratic lawmakers also pushed for other pro-democratic measures this session, including establishing early voting and registration three days before elections (SB 52), permitting voter registration on election day and at early voting sites (HB 86), exploring the introducing vote-by-mail elections (HJM 12), requiring school counselors to be voter registration agents (SB 410), and creating a task force to improve voting for Native Americans in the state (HB 249). New Mexico Democrats introduced legislation (HM 52) in support of the For the People Act of 2019 (H.R.). H.R. 1 would transform American elections to make them considerably fairer and freer. All states should support its passage in the U.S. Senate.

This session, a bill (SB 416) was also introduced to establish an independent redistricting commission in the state. Independent redistricting is the best way to fight back against extreme partisan gerrymandering and to ensure fair maps.