Watch this space for updates on our voting rights bills as they progress through the 60-day session.
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1/17/23 — The 2023 Regular Session of the New Mexico State Legislature begins.
1/27/23 — House Bill 4, also called the 2023 New Mexico Voting Rights Act (NMVRA) is introduced. It includes provisions that inmates are eligible to vote and register to vote upon release; eliminates a requirement that a voter’s registration be canceled upon felony conviction, improves Automatic Voter Registration to be an opt-out system; improves the security of voter’s personal data; creates a voluntary permanent absentee voter list; provides requirements for the provision of monitored secured containers; enacts the Native American Voting Rights Act to protect polling place access and addresses other election issues involving voters on Indian Nation, Tribal and Pueblo land; declares election days to be a school holiday; and other technical changes.
It is sponsored by Speaker Javier Martínez, Sen. Katy M. Duhigg, and Reps. Gail Chasey, D. Wonda Johnson, and Raymundo Lara. It is referred to the House Government, Elections & Indian Affairs Committee, then the House Judiciary Committee.
1/30/23 — House Bill 217, 16- And 17-Year-Olds As Qualified Electors is introduced. This bill simply changes a qualified elector for the purpose of voting, from at least eighteen, to sixteen. It is sponsored by Representatives Christine Trujillo and Kristina Ortez. It is also referred to the House Government, Elections & Indian Affairs Committee, then the House Judiciary Committee.
2/1/23 — HB 4 is scheduled to be heard in the House Government, Elections & Indian Affairs Committee on Friday morning at 8:30am! Contact the committee – Email them, call their offices, join the hearing in Santa Fe if you can, or join the Zoom meeting on Friday morning to make your voice heard!
2/3/23 — HB 4 is up today! If you haven’t yet, email the committee! Join the Zoom, watch the Webcast, follow along on Twitter with the hashtags #nmleg and #hb4! (ProgressNow has a tweet thread going here.)
Discussion of HB 4 will resume and be voted on in the HGEIAC on Wednesday 2/8 at 8:30am.
2/7/23 — HB 217 16- And 17-Year-Olds As Qualified Electors will be heard in the HGEAIC on Saturday 2/11 at 1pm!
2/8/23 — HB 4 is being discussed again in HGEIAC today. NM Secretary of State, Maggie Toulouse Oliver is fielding dozens of questions from committee members, mostly from one election denier. (ProgressNow is again live-tweeting! Follow along here.)
2/11/23 — HB 217 was heard in the HGEAIC. You showed up and spoke powerfully in favor of enfranchising 16- and 17-year olds! The committee had one absence and voted 4-4, so the bill will not proceed.
2/13/23 — HB 4 was continued discussion in HJC. The Secretary of State again answered all questions patiently and thoroughly.
The committee passes HB 4 – the Voting Rights Act – 7-4!
Next up: House Floor! Contact your Representative!
2/21/23 — HB 4 is on the House Floor Schedule. It may be heard this afternoon.
~8:30pm HB 4 is being heard on the House Floor. Representative Gail Chasey is a great debater!
~11:30pm HB 4 passes the House 41-26!
2/22/23 — HB 4 is introduced in the Senate and referred to the Senate Rules and Senate Judiciary committees.
2/27/23 — HB 4 passes Senate Rules 5-2 with a few clarifying amendments.
Next Up: Senate Judiciary, then Senate Floor, then House Concurrence, then Governor’s Desk!
3/7/23 — HB 4 passes Senate Judiciary 6-3 with no further amendments! Onto the Senate Floor!
3/8/23 —After almost three hours of debate and proposed amendments, HB 4 passed the Senate Floor! It now heads back to the House for concurrence with the Senate’s amendments.
3/8/23 —The House voted 42-25 to Concur with the Senate’s amendments to HB 4! The debate was kept only to amended portions of the bill, and so debate was short!
Onto the Governor’s desk!
3/30/23 — Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed the New Mexico Voting Rights Act into Law today!
Watch our recorded livestream video here!