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READ: Here’s what Trump’s, racist, sexist, anti-lands, anti-poor nominees mean for New Mexico

Donald Trump’s nominees to lead his administration set a dangerous precedent for our country and New Mexico. Led by alt-right, White supremacist advisors at the helm, nominees like these bring loads of conflicts and ideological beliefs that threaten to destroy our country’s basic institutions, further divide our country and erode opportunity for working families of all persuasions. Earlier this month, Senator Tom Udall summed up the new challenge and importance of focussing our efforts on Washington over the next few weeks:
“This is not the time to weaken our position in Washington. President-elect Trump has proposed policies with respect to health care, constitutional rights, immigration, privatizing public lands, and foreign policy that could be devastating to the citizens of New Mexico. When I was elected to the Senate, I committed to standing up in Washington for New Mexico families to ensure everyone has an opportunity to get ahead and their needs never take a back seat to wealthy special interests.

Trump’s EPA pick let Republican donors, oil execs draft climate policy

Donald Trump will name Oklahoma’s climate-denying, Big Oil attorney general to head the Environmental Protection Agency. He’s been an architect of a plan by conservative attorneys generals suing to undo the very agency Trump has now proposed him to lead and public records show that he allowed Republican donors and big oil executives to write climate policies for his office.

Udall says no to Gov run; Here’s who else is expected to be in.

Almost exactly a month after he first announced that he was considering a run for governor, New Mexico’s senior senator said today that he’s sticking with the senate. That announcement (full text below), is likely good news for Albuquerque-area Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham who is widely expected to announce for governor soon. Other names rumored to be considering a run for the Democratic nomination include Attorney General Hector Balderas, Santa Fe businessman and former candidate Alan Webber and former Univision executive Jeff Apodaca. On the Republican side, Lt. Gov. John Sanchez and Congressman Steve Pearce have both been rumored to be considering a run to follow Susana Martinez who is term limited in 2018. From Sen. Udall today:

Udall: Staying in the Senate is the Best Way I can Fight for New Mexico

U.S. Senator Tom Udall issued the following statement:

“I am very grateful for the support of so many New Mexicans who have personally urged me to run for governor in 2018.

New Mexico is officially the “Worst-Run State” in America (again)

For the second year in a row, New Mexico is at the top of a list: the worst-run states in the nation. The embarrassing news first reported in New Mexico by the NM Political Report:
A high poverty rate, dire budget situation and high unemployment led to New Mexico once again being named the worst-run state in the nation, according to a list compiled by 24/7 Wall St. This is the second year in a row that the publication ranked New Mexico as the worst-run state in the country. The site ranks the states based on “measures of financial health and fiscal responsibility, as well as socioeconomic outcomes such as unemployment, poverty, and crime — conditions state governments are tasked with managing and improving.”

In addition to other economic factors, 24/7 Wall St. cited Moody’s Investor Services downgrading the state’s credit rating which came because of a general lack of general fund reserves.

State Auditor Tim Keller Releases Special Audit of Untested Sexual Assault Evidence Kits

You should be angry about this: New Mexico has the highest backlog of rape kits per capita in the nation. 5440 rape kits (and counting). Oh, sorry – make that number 5,302 because the State Forensic Lab tested only 128 rape kits last year. All year. On Tuesday, New Mexico State Auditor Tim Keller released a statewide special audit of the untested sexual assault evidence kits.

VICTORY: Obama administration rejects DAPL pipeline route through sacred sites

Facing an increasingly determined and growing community of protestors and pressure from federal legislators and community groups, the federal Army Corps of Engineers announced late Sunday that it would deny the permit for the last leg of the DAPL, a controversial federal oil pipeline through sacred tribal areas in North Dakota. New Mexicans have made high-profile efforts to join the opposition in recent months.  State Democratic Party Chair Deb Haaland, herself the only Native party chair in the country, traveled there last month. 

Senators Udall and Heinrich also issued letters to President Obama called for the permit denial. 

Heinrich calls on Obama to move Dakota Access Pipeline | NM Political Report
Heinrich concerned over violence against Standing Rock protesters | NM Political Report 
Udall also wants Dakota Access Pipeline moved, denounces violence | NM Political Report

From the New York Times: 

“Although we have had continuing discussion and exchanges of new information with the Standing Rock Sioux and Dakota Access, it’s clear that there’s more work to do,” Ms. Darcy said. “The best way to complete that work responsibly and expeditiously is to explore alternate routes for the pipeline crossing.”

The administration also signaled its intent to require a full environmental impact report and public input. Both were deemed unnecessary by the applicants but were seen as critical components to future opposition plans. 

Again, The Times:

The consideration of alternative routes “would be best accomplished through an Environmental Impact Statement with full public input and analysis,” Ms Darcy said in a statement.

New Mexico Women March on the Roundhouse and DC

New Mexico Women will march on the New Mexico State Capitol and in Washington, DC one day after the pending inauguration of President-Elect Donald Trump, soon to be the 45th President of the United States. The gathering in New Mexico will culminate in a rally at the Roundhouse in Santa Fe in what will be a national day of action. The Women’s March on Washington, scheduled for Saturday, January 21 is expected to draw hundreds of thousands of women to the nation’s capital to collectively denounce Trump’s presidential campaign rhetoric aimed at minorities and women. This rally, and all other marches on Washington in the 2oth Century live in the shadow of the historic March on Washington in 1963, when the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his indelible, “I have a Dream” speech. The Women’s March on Washington is bound to be as impactful and the rallies that have come before.

Sen Domenici returns to lobby Congress, Trump to transfer public lands to big oil through Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn

In August, Republican Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn announced his plan to ask the federal government to turn over “upwards of 6.5 millions acres” of  “unleased federal subsurface mineral acreage” (ie, federal public lands) and federal mining leases to him.

“Any and all unleased land… would then be leased out by the State Land Office” for new oil and gas permits, Dunn said.

Trump’s EPA pick let Republican donors, oil execs draft climate policy

Donald Trump will name Oklahoma’s climate-denying, Big Oil attorney general to head the Environmental Protection Agency. He’s been an architect of a plan by conservative attorneys generals suing to undo the very agency Trump has now proposed him to lead and public records show that he allowed Republican donors and big oil executives to write climate policies for his office.

Udall says no to Gov run; Here’s who else is expected to be in.

Almost exactly a month after he first announced that he was considering a run for governor, New Mexico’s senior senator said today that he’s sticking with the senate. That announcement (full text below), is likely good news for Albuquerque-area Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham who is widely expected to announce for governor soon. Other names rumored to be considering a run for the Democratic nomination include Attorney General Hector Balderas, Santa Fe businessman and former candidate Alan Webber and former Univision executive Jeff Apodaca. On the Republican side, Lt. Gov. John Sanchez and Congressman Steve Pearce have both been rumored to be considering a run to follow Susana Martinez who is term limited in 2018. From Sen. Udall today:

Udall: Staying in the Senate is the Best Way I can Fight for New Mexico

U.S. Senator Tom Udall issued the following statement:

“I am very grateful for the support of so many New Mexicans who have personally urged me to run for governor in 2018.

New Mexico is officially the “Worst-Run State” in America (again)

For the second year in a row, New Mexico is at the top of a list: the worst-run states in the nation. The embarrassing news first reported in New Mexico by the NM Political Report:
A high poverty rate, dire budget situation and high unemployment led to New Mexico once again being named the worst-run state in the nation, according to a list compiled by 24/7 Wall St. This is the second year in a row that the publication ranked New Mexico as the worst-run state in the country. The site ranks the states based on “measures of financial health and fiscal responsibility, as well as socioeconomic outcomes such as unemployment, poverty, and crime — conditions state governments are tasked with managing and improving.”

In addition to other economic factors, 24/7 Wall St. cited Moody’s Investor Services downgrading the state’s credit rating which came because of a general lack of general fund reserves.

State Auditor Tim Keller Releases Special Audit of Untested Sexual Assault Evidence Kits

You should be angry about this: New Mexico has the highest backlog of rape kits per capita in the nation. 5440 rape kits (and counting). Oh, sorry – make that number 5,302 because the State Forensic Lab tested only 128 rape kits last year. All year. On Tuesday, New Mexico State Auditor Tim Keller released a statewide special audit of the untested sexual assault evidence kits.