Arizona GOP lawmaker booted from committee after backing abortion ban repeal

April 24, 2024

Two Arizona state House lawmakers were removed from key committees Monday following the chamber’s vote to repeal the state’s 1864 abortion ban, with one Republican who voted with Democrats among them.

Arizona state House Rep. Matt Gress (R) was removed from the Appropriations Committee, while Rep. Oscar De Los Santos (D) was removed from both the Appropriations Committee and Rules Committee.

“I find it shameful that the Republicans are retaliating against me for speaking out for reproductive freedom. I will not be silenced. I will not be intimidated,” De Los Santos said when reached for comment by The Hill.

The Arizona state House passed a bill Wednesday to repeal the state’s 1864 abortion ban by a vote of 32-28, with three Republicans including Gress joining Democrats in voting “yes.” Gress was the sole Republican to vote with Democrats when they attempted to pass the bill last week.

GOP-controlled Arizona House votes to repeal Civil War-era abortion ban

Republican state Reps. Tim Dunn (R) and Justin Wilmeth (R) also voted with Democrats to repeal the ban.

Gress did not immediately respond when reached for comment but did release a statement following the vote.

“Today, the Arizona House acted on a bipartisan basis to repeal our state’s territorial abortion law that is unworkable and out of line with the values of Arizonans,” Gress said.

“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 this issue that we cannot respect and protect women and defend new life at the same time.”

Arizona House Speaker Ben Toma (R) and Speaker Pro Tempore Travis Grantham (R) did not immediately respond when reached for comment on the removal of Gress and De Los Santos from the committees.