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Thursday, October 20, 2005

GOP Infighting: It's Not Just for the Adults, Plus: The Vise Tightens On Vigil, And: Banned In Hobbs? Not If I Can Help It 

If New Mexico Republicans are placing their hopes for a future unified party on the state's college Republicans they might want to reassess. While the adult version of the GOP has been plagued by intra-party rivals so have the college Republicans at UNM. Infighting broke out in their recent election. Guess they are learning from the adults.

Meanwhile, I'm hearing reports that there could be another round of R's challenging R's in next year's legislative primaries. You'll recall in 2004 a faction of the GOP led by lawyer/lobbyist Mickey Barnett openly challenged fellow R's. Now there is scuttleutt that a chief legislative ally of Mickey's, Roswell Rep. Dan Foley, could be in for a primary challenge. I'll do my best in the coming weeks to nail it down so stay tuned.

A TIGHTENING VISE

Yes, I too hear the vise tightening on federally indicted state Treasurer Robert Vigil. His lawyer popped the "R' word this week. No doubt Vigil is one tough hombre, but the pressure has to be unbearable. It tends to get that way when what is at stake is the future of the government and therefore the smooth functioning of an economy. I would not be surprised to see a near unanimous vote for impeachment in the State House. By resigning, Vigil would avoid having future generations see his photo in the history books as the first impeached official ever and he would be able to devote himself full-time to his legal defense.

Put another way: The writing is on the wall, the fat lady is about to sing and it's all over but the shouting. Resignation is the pragmatic and honorable course.

THE AG'S RACE: BE CAREFUL

I've got to be more careful when I dip my toes into that raging river called the race for attorney general. There are so many players that any mention of the contest can ensnare you in endless intrigue. One angle, though, merits mention. GOP sources were reporting that attorney Pete Domenici Jr., son of you know who, was a possible for the R's, but are now backing off and reporting he will not take the plunge.

DATELINE HOBBS

And we finish up today about as far from the big city as you can get--Hobbs, NM. I put my foot in my mouth when I blogged October 12: "You can be sure that if Big Bill's campaign was unveiled with even one flaw, the offender would be shot on sight, or at least banished to a one bedroom apartment in Hobbs to run the field operation there." Well, several of my Hobbs readers rightfully took offense. Living in Hobbs is not banishment at all, said they. Here's Hobbs News-Sun publisher Kathi Bearden's response.

"I can assure that living here is not a banishment. Further, you would be hard pressed to find a one bedroom apartment in Hobbs as we are in a growth cycle of economic development that has our housing market as tight as a blog-writer's column.

I am unaware of any community in New Mexico that I would consider a banishment post. Please reconsider your remarks about Hobbs and consider this an invitation to visit any time."

You got me Kathi, but don't be too hard on me. After all, I'm the guy who planted the idea of getting another oil refinery in Lea County with county commissioner chairman Harry Teague. If it happens, that would fill up even more of those one bedroom apartments.

As for no place in New Mexico being a banishment post, that's true as long as the Legislature is not in session.

E-mail me your comments, news, criticisms or whatever else is on your mind and let's keep the politics coming. Thanks for your company.

(c)NM POLITICS WITH JOE MONAHAN 2005
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