Will you contribute $10,$25 or $50 to help defeat Governor Martinez and Governor Jay McLCeskey so that we can elect a Democratic Governor that will focus on jobs and education for New Mexicans? Please help us by contributing whatever you can spare today.
Here is the sad reality for New Mexico after 39 months of Governor Martinez and Governor McCleskey’s policies:
NM ranked last in job growth for 12 month period ending in February; one of only 3 states that lost jobs in last year
Worst New Mexico economy in 80 years, huge job and population losses, record commercial real estate vacancies
NM ranks 50th in well being of children and first in child hunger, 2nd for adults
Mental health and substance abuse services cut for 30,000 residents.
“We need someone who will lead and govern — not play politics!”
This resounding message given by Senator William Soules (D-32-Doña Ana) in the Democratic response to the governor’s State of the State speech set the stage for the start of the 30-day 2014 legislative session.
Senator Soules countered the governor’s empty remarks and lack of record regarding education, economic development, employment, water, and her predictable and oft-repeated wedge issue of issuing driver’s licenses to undocumented iimmigrants.
“The governor’s budget allows for only a 1.8 percent increase in education funding with most of it being controlled by the Public Education Department and not under local control,” Senator Soules said. “We (Democrats) have an education budget that calls for a 7.1 percent increase in education funding with most flowing through the funding formula so that local school districts, who know their own communities the best, can make the best decisions to support their schools. New Mexico has the fairest system for funding.”
“Not once did (the governor) mention poverty. Children in poverty start kindergarten 18 months behind. Every child should be able to start school prepared. We need to invest in high-quality early childhood education. Children can’t wait until the economy improves. Children can’t wait until the political climate changes. The children are counting on us. Investing in education is economic development,” added Senator Soules.
Senator Soules also questioned the governor’s commitment to jobs and economic development as state agencies under her control returned $65 million to the general fund last year through unfilled positions, cutting of services, and the playing of politics with capital outlay funds, all of which contributed to the stunting of local economies.
“This money would have funded jobs and services to help our most vulnerable,” Senator Soules said. “The Legislature put together a bipartisan jobs council with specific recommendations. This governor has chosen to ignore the recommendations and instead gave tax breaks to big out-of-state corporations. We need someone who will lead and govern — not play politics!”
Sentor Soules also commented that while the governor spoke about the number of jobs created, she failed to mention the number of jobs that have been lost in her administration. There has been no job growth. “As other states around us have come out of the recession, New Mexico has continued to drag. The wealthy have seen a rebound, and the poor haven’t. We have the largest income inequality in the nation,” Sen. Soules continued.
Democrats are committed to raising the minimum wage, a measure that was passed in 2013 but callously vetoed by the governor. “Research is clear, moderate increases stimulate the economy. It does not cause job loss,” Senator Soules said.
The senator from Las Cruces also questioned the governor’s continued focus on taking away driving privileges from undocumented immigrants and her classification of the existing law “dangerous.” Many law-enforcement agencies publicly support the law because it enables them to better track the drivers on the road.
“The governor has tried before and failed and is using this for political gain because it is a wedge issue, designed to separate people by class and to scare people,” Sen. Soules said. “Since last session, 10 additional states have begun issuing licenses to undocumented immigrants.”
Senator Soules also brought up the governor’s newfound concern for the state’s critical water situation, saying, that all legislators in New Mexico recognize the value of water and appreciate the efforts to make it a priority. But he shared frustration about the fact that Governor Martinez has not included legislators in her plans for water infrastructure improvements.
“Her hidden plans and dismissive attitude toward the legislators around the state hinder the ability of us all to make substantive changes. She will find much more cooperation if she included us rather than trying to work around us,” said Senator Soules.
DPNM has filed Inspection of Public Records Requests with the Governor’s Office and two key state agencies in an effort to determine the level of involvement Governor Martinez’s private political consultant has exerted over major state government decisions.
Part of this request has been for “all emails, documents, papers, letters, notes, and other materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics, that were used, created, received, maintained or held by or on behalf of Governor Susana Martinez, her staff,… Jay McCleskey and Nicole McCleseky regarding the creation of budget recommendations for fiscal year 2012.”
“Based on all of the recent media reports involving Jay McCleskey, there are real questions as to who is making major decisions regarding New Mexico state government. DPNM has an obligation to New Mexico voters to find out if a political consultant, Jay McCleskey, has been given the authority that is only given to an elected Governor,” commented DPNM Chairman Sam Bregman.
“The question becomes: who’s in charge, Governor Martinez or the ‘shadow governor’ Jay McCleskey?”
DPNM has filed formal complaints to the IRS and FEC regarding the activities of a suspect organization that may be illegally coordinating with, and seeking to conceal campaign contributions on behalf of New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez. The intent of these activities may be to violate and circumvent New Mexico law limiting campaign contributions to candidates.
According to an article appearing in the National Journal on November 21, 2013 “The Man Who Discovered Susana Martinez Could Also Be Her Downfall” reported that Andrea Goff, the former finance director of Susana Martinez’s campaign and of Susana PAC, Governor Martinez’s political action committee, that Governor Martinez, “specifically told her that McCleskey was launching” New Mexico Competes, Inc.
Any involvement, including fundraising, advising, messaging whether on paper or behind the scenes would violate rules prohibiting coordination.
“These are serious allegations. DPNM has a responsibility to the voters of New Mexico to ensure that Governor Martinez and her ‘undercover’ operatives are adhering to all federal and state campaign laws. She promised full and open transparency as Governor and if she won’t keep her campaign promises, then maybe the IRS and the FEC will make that decision for her,” stated DPNM Chairman Sam Bregman.
New Mexico Competes, Inc. has already spent large amounts of money in political advertising, radio and print, targeting those who oppose Governor Martinez and to promote Governor Martinez to the voters of New Mexico.
In addition, contributions from individuals, businesses, and political committees in excess of New Mexico law that were donated through New Mexico Competes, Inc. may have violated both federal and state law.
Key Martinez cabinet secretaries ‘out of control’ and
disinterested in New Mexico families
Governor Martinez wasted no time appointing two out-of-state Republican hacks that had no background or understanding of New Mexico to agencies responsible for children and families. Hanna Skandera and Sidonie Squier, both mediocre and poor candidates for any position, with no experience or understanding of New Mexico, were put in charge of Public Education and Human Services. Their arrogant, “I know best” attitude has contributed to a lack of progress and lack of hope that thousands of New Mexico families are facing each day. Now, we have a situation with the out-of-control Children, Youth and Families Department that is placing children in constant danger.
A few days ago, an audit completed by the Legislative Finance Committee discovered three registered sex offenders living in homes that served as state registered child care centers. CYFD has no idea how many other sex offenders are living in registered homes because there is no oversight or control.
HSD Secretary Squier, self-described expert on hunger and everything else in New Mexico, stated a few days ago “Since there has never been and is not now any significant evidence of hunger in New Mexico…” and warning that the state “can’t just expand every government food program in existence.” Meanwhile, national studies continue to rank New Mexico first in child hunger and second for adult hunger.
Children placed in dangerous situations and out of control cabinet secretaries denying that hunger exists or even a problem—why hasn’t Governor Martinez stepped in, fixed the problem and said ‘you’re fired’? Why won’t she do her job?
Smiley photo-ops and reading books to kids, racing around here and there, always ready with a canned quip, constitute the only response NM families will ever receive from Governor Martinez. Human service agencies like HSD, CYFD and PED trudge along with key positions left unfilled, budgets constantly reduced and incompetent hacks left in charge.
Governor Martinez: if families and children are not priorities, what is?
3 years ago while running for Governor of New Mexico, candidate Martinez used any opportunity to blast Democrats and our Governor for each and every problem that affected New Mexicans. She won the election and for 31 months, has failed to offer a plan or vision that would improve the lives for 2 million+ New Mexicans.
Non-stop smoke and mirrors are on constant display while everything that matters to New Mexican families—jobs, education, healthcare, the drought, open government and the lack of senior qualified individuals to run state government, are ignored and blamed on the past.
Item: Governor Martinez blames everything wrong on government, conveniently forgetting she has been on the taxpayer’s charge card most if not all of her professional life. Has she ever notworked for government?
Item: The Governor seeks out gossip magazines to get fluff pieces on reading books to children and to highlight the personal care she bestows upon her older, disabled sister. Meanwhile, 30,000+ New Mexican families are pushed under the bus and left stranded in a major health crisis, thanks to her mean spirited and vindictive HSD Secretary. Education policy is assigned to inexperienced, out-of-state hacks that lack any understanding of New Mexico and its unique culture.
Item: Allows her husband to go on a secret vacation to Louisiana, sending 2 NM state police officers along that work overtime, charging taxpayers almost $3400. All of this for a spouse who carries a law enforcement badge and works security.
Item: Along with all of the other campaign falsehoods and broken promises, this Governor pledged full and open transparency throughout state government. (Unless it’s something that might cause national media queries, jeopardizing her next political office)
Journalist Trip Jennings in a letter to the Governor seeking info on the shutdown of 15 behavioral health centers sums it up: “The political discourse around this issue, as with many political elections and most public debates, is shallow, short on facts and tilted toward scaremongering.”
Arrogance, hypocrisy and tearing down our social fabric belong to Governor Martinez and the Republican Party.
Democrats believe in people and understand that public policies must be designed in a fair and equal manner to lift up and empower all New Mexicans. As we move towards building the future, our candidates will propose and implement ideas, policies and solutions that will improve lives, not ignore, separate and destroy them.
Under Governor Susana Martinez’s leadership New Mexico has been the only state in the region to lose more jobs than it gained. From September 2011 to 2012, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that the state lost more than 9,200 jobs. In fact, New Mexico is one of only six states that continues to bleed employment.
New Mexico’s record through the first half of Governor Martinez’s administration shows otherwise. “This administration has adopted a fatalistic approach to job creation. They claim that government can’t grow jobs and business doesn’t want to move here. Then they slash the funding of any agency looking to prove otherwise but put up smokescreens like wildly unrealistic expecations for job growth and hope it happens. It makes no sense, but it’s our reality,” writes Progress Now New Mexico. “The bottom line for New Mexico: this arithmetic doesn’t add up. Adding investing in economic development programs, especially in tough times, creates jobs. Cutting those programs loses them.”