Friday, May 20, 2011

Friday Clippings From My Newsroom Floor; Susana And Veep, The Idea Factory And One Legislator Who's Sitting Pretty 

Governor Martinez told a recent gathering of NM GOP county chairmen that she plans to finish her four year term and will not take a place on the 2012 GOP presidential ticket. Her name has been circulated as a possible VP pick. Our insiders say Martinez noted that her ethnic background is the primary driver of the veep speculation. Of course, saying you won't take a spot on the ticket now is a whole lot different than saying you won't if and when it is actually offered. As a freshman Governor, Martinez's chances would seem very long, but stranger things have happened. Think Dan Quayle.

Those attending the session also tell us that not only did Susana say she would finish her current term but her "next" one as well. How's that for sending some shivers down Democratic spines? Susana all the way until 2017! That's the Republican dream and the Dem nightmare.

Meanwhile, the Guv's main political adviser, Jay McCleskey, has been signed up by ABQ GOP City Councilor Trudy Jones to handle her re-election campaign. Our Alligators say Jones recently made that announcement to supporters. That means we are going to have a whale of a race because former GOP ABQ City Councilor Greg Payne, also a political consultant, is seeking to unseat Trudy in the NE Heights district that he was elected to in 1999. Jones has shunned the spotlight the past four years. But that's about to change--at least on the campaign trail.

With Payne and McCleskey going after one another, more punches are going to be thrown than you see at a Saturday night bar fight. (Do they still have those around here?)

Did we mention that if Payne--who has a well-known independent streak--takes the seat back that the current 5 to 4 Republican majority on the council won't automatically vote as Republican Mayor Berry would like? What's that phrase the kids use? "Game-changer?"

The city election is October 4.


We spent some time again this week looking for ideas to pump up the stalled state economy and that in turn prompted a bunch of ideas from readers. For example, from Santa Fe:

New Mexico needs to rebrand itself. We need to advertise, communicate and reach out to national and global business. Banks must start lending money. Lastly, America must get a handle on taxing goods and serves sold over the Internet. Cities, counties, state and the Federal Government are loosing billions in lost revenues. These sales are being made to places outside this country. In contrast, local businesses are closing because of their inability to compete.


Congrats to all those recent UNM graduates. Or maybe they would rather still be in school. Take a look:

The brutal job market brought on by the recession has been hard on everyone, but especially devastating on the youngest members of the labor force. About 60% of recent graduates have not been able to find a full-time job in their chosen profession, according to job placement firm Adecco....Last year, the unemployment rate for college graduates age 24 and younger rose to 9.4%, the highest since the Labor Department began keeping records in 1985.


On the ongoing debate over ABQ Public Schools funding, reader Jim McClure writes:

No one--parents, media, or politicians--is challenging the education mafia's mantra that incrementally larger class sizes will automatically harm education. Every study I've read suggests that there's no correlation between class size and educational results. Most of us went to school in an era in which both class sizes and graduation rates were higher than they are today.

Another shortfall in local reportage is that no one has correlated APS employment and spending with student enrollment. If the APS budget is reduced to 2007 levels, it would be useful to know whether student enrollment is higher or lower than it was in 2007. Nor has anyone compared APS' administrative headcount and salaries with comparable school districts elsewhere.


A reader writes of the prominent role ABQ Dem State Senator Linda Lopez is playing in the redistricting of state, federal and ABQ offices, and opines:

Linda M. López just became co-chair of the legislative redistricting committee as well as co-chair of the senate redistricting committee and also is a member of the Albuquerque City Council redistricting committee. She now is in a position to carve out for herself a safe seat where she does not have any, but token opposition.

With those additions to her resume, do you think Linda is going to make a lot of new "friends" this year?

Thanks for stopping by this week. From Albuquerque, I'm Joe Monahan reporting.

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