Friday, August 03, 2012

Friday Clips: King Battles Press, Johnson Jokes, Susana In Her Mirror And Jabbing Mitt 

We're on the 2014 campaign trail because...well...someone has to do it. Anyway, Dem attorney general and announced 2014 Guv candidate Gary King is going to be battling on all fronts in his difficult trek towards the nomination. That includes his ongoing battle with the state's largest newspaper--the ABQ Journal. Here comes the AG's spokesman to warm up the crowd with a blistering retort to a Journal editorial about emailgate which scorched the AG for daring to talk about investigating the controversy.

Now,  to the meat of the Journal's visceral reaction to the Attorney General looking into possible wrongdoing in the Governor's Office. The paper once again trots out the conflict horse saying AG King, "can't see  the  conflict-of-interest forest for the political-advantage trees." I  am not sure if it was a mistake, but the editorial then states that it is indeed the Attorney General's job to, "represent the state and investigate allegations about public agencies and actions of public employees." And in the same breath the editorial says if the AG does deign to investigate, he opens himself up to more criticism than usual (ostensibly from the Journal) for being politically motivated because of his political plans.

But saving the best for last, the Journal posits that AG King should finish investigating and  prosecuting other cases and not bother the Governor, i.e.,"...leave any investigation of the incumbent's administration to others." Seriously? If memory serves, the Journal frothily advocated  investigating former Governor Bill Richardson for any  perceived infraction the paper could gin up. But not this time, not by this Attorney General anyway.

You might think that getting into an argument with those who print ink by the barrel is a poor political choice for King, but when you're being written off for dead, any sign of life you emit can be rejuvenating. Stay tuned....


Santa Fe reader Mark Cross writes of former NM Governor and 2012 Libertarian Party presidential nominee Gary Johnson:

Hi Joe, I am a longtime reader and the author of the Encyclopedia of Santa Fe and Northern New Mexico. You may be interested in this telling anecdote the next time you write about Gary Johnson.

Gary Johnson appeared on Real Time with Bill Maher a few months ago. Maher was talking to his three guests, including Johnson, about an incident on an airliner involving Mitt Romney. The man sitting in front of Romney had been slow in following the instruction to raise his seatback before takeoff, and objected to Romney’s nagging him. An argument ensued, and the man was led off the plane. Maher made the point that the man was an African-American and asked his guests if the Mormon Church’s historical refusal to admit blacks could have been a factor in the incident. One guest said that Maher had an interesting point. An African-American woman, a Republican, said it was a ridiculous idea. Maher finally turned to Gary Johnson. Johnson thought for a minute and then said, “You know, I’ve never understood why I have to put my seatback up before takeoff.”


New Mexico gets a tip of the hat from President Obama as it heads into a summer weekend. The news:

President Barack Obama on Thursday named UNM law school Dean Kevin Washburn to become Assistant U.S. Secretary of Indian Affairs, the highest ranking federal position in charge of Native American affairs. In making the announcement, Obama said Washburn--a member of the Chickasaw Nation in Oklahoma--has  "demonstrated knowledge and dedication throughout (his) career” and the president said he looks forward to working with him. The position requires Senate confirmation.

Senate confirmation should be a no-brainer for Washburn who has a lengthy resume dealing with Indian affairs (Senator Tom Udall is on the Indian Affairs Committee where the nomination is heard first). And he's been an aggressive and effective promoter of the University of New Mexico School of Law during his three year tenure. The appointment is going to help Obama in this state and it also is a feather in the troubled cap of outgoing UNM president David Schmidly on whose watch Washburn operated and won this appointment.


Governor Martinez, in an interview with the conservative publication Human Events:

I’m very focused on New Mexico and making sure I fulfill my promises. So often I am introduced as the first female Hispanic governor in history and with that, little girls everywhere come up and hug me and know my name at the age of four. And I ask ‘Why are you running up to hug me when you should be playing with dolls?’  So it’s my obligation to lay this path of promises kept so that these little girls can follow this path knowing I have done it in an honorable way.


A reader writes:

Joe, Think anyone will ask him or Susana or Heather about this:?

Mitt Romney’s Bain Capital duped New Mexico more than a decade ago when it set up a Silver City call center, promising more than 1,000 local jobs, only to have it close just two and half years later in a wave of outsourcing, laying off almost 800 middle-class workers and taking New Mexico taxpayers for more than $2.5 million in the process.

We don't think you will hear Governor Martinez or GOP Senate candidate Wilson saying much of anything about Romney until he signals that he wants to seriously fight for the state's five electoral votes.


The New Mexico Association of Counties reports:

...The new officers of the Association are President and Taos County Commissioner Andrew Chavez, President-Elect and Lea County Assessor Dee Robinson, Vice President and Curry County Commissioner Wendell Bostwick, Treasurer and Los Alamos County Councilor Sharon Stover, and Past President and  San Juan County Commissioner Tony Atkinson.  


From Conan O'Brien:

"Big political upset in Texas. Did you hear about this? In Texas, a Tea Party candidate who's Hispanic has won the Republican Senate nomination. Impressive, yeah. His campaign slogan is, 'I Hate Me.'"

Thanks for stopping by.

This is the home of New Mexico politics.

Reporting to you this week from Napa Valley, California I'm Joe Monahan.

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