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Ortiz, De Los Santos found to have broken House rules after viral abortion protest

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(The Center Square) – Arizona Democratic Reps. Analise Ortiz and Oscar De Los Santos were found in violation of the House’s “standards of order and decorum.”

The Center Square reported in April that protests among Democratic lawmakers broke out on the House floor after one of the efforts to vote on the 1864 abortion law repeal was shot down.

The ethics committee reports specifically cite how the pair shouted phrases such as “Shame!” as well as interrupting a press conference Rep. Matt Gress, R-Phoenix, was holding on the floor, which The Center Square caught on video. The reports noted that it was “recorded from many angles.”

“For these reasons, the Committee cannot allow violations of the rules of decorum and order to be characterized as anything other than disorderly behavior. Doing so would not only render the rules meaningless; it would set an improper and damaging precedent for this body as an institution,” both reports state.

The abortion repeal was eventually passed by both chambers with all Democrats and a handful of Republican votes in support. It was signed by Gov. Katie Hobbs on May 2, but it will take roughly three months until after the legislative session ends in order for it to take effect.

Ortiz was found in violation of House Rule 1, whereas De Los Santos was found in violation of House Rules 1, 18, and 19. The two lawmakers responded to the report and stood by their actions on April 10.

“We want to reiterate that we were speaking on behalf of our constituents when we said “shame” as Republicans tried to uphold the horrific and deadly 1864 abortion ban. This entire process is nothing more than another Republican attempt to suppress speech that they disagree with,” Ortiz and De Los Santos said in a statement.

“They consistently abuse their power to silence dissent. We saw them do that once again today when they closed the gallery to the public and voted to send an unconstitutional, anti-immigrant and discriminatory ballot measure to voters. Meanwhile, one of their members is accused of committing an actual crime by forging petition signatures and had their complaint dismissed. We are focused on the people’s work—on finding real solutions to serious issues—not these petty political games,” the pair added.

However, it is up to the House to decide what measures they want to take as a result, and that could range from no action to censures or even expulsions. However, expulsions require a 2/3 vote in the chamber.

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