Tuesday, February 14, 2017
How About A Political Odd Couple? Big Bill, Trump And The Diplomatic Front, Plus: Pearce's Place; He Revs Up Guv Engine With Jobs Talk
former two term NM governor and diplomat teaming up with Trump? After all, two of the most troubling foreign policy issues are in Mexico and North Korea which just sent up another ballistic missile. Richardson is expert in both nations. He never has been a wallflower and has recently been offering Trump advice on the op-ed pages, even revealing that he has read the President's book "Art of the Deal". On Mexico, Richardson is saying:
The threats on paying for the wall, the threats to renegotiate NAFTA, the threats of the import fee have stoked a real nationalism in the Mexican people that is going to give President Peña Nieto very little room to maneuver.
Time is running out for Richardson to climb to the highest rungs on the diplomatic totem pole. After years of speculation that he would become secretary of state or the first ambassador to Cuba, the Democrat and former UN ambassador has come up empty handed, stymied by his rocky relationship with the Clintons and a lukewarm one with Obama.
Richardson turns 70 this year and now might be his last best chance to top off his colorful career by cutting a deal with the author of the "Art of the Deal" to put him on the world stage. Far fetched? Maybe. But look who's president.
GOP Congressman Steve Pearce is sounding more like an '18 Republican contender for Governor as he works the jobs angle and extends an olive branch to Democrats, even as he takes a thinly disguised jab at them in the way he describes their party:
a new oil refinery that would be built using private funds. I have offered to work with the democrat leadership in the State House and Senate to get the most environmentally friendly, state of the art construction.
Uh, Steve, That's supposed to be "Democratic" leadership not "democrat." Guess he doesn't want to look too cozy with the Dems as he romances that big block of Trump supporters he would need to win his party's gubernatorial primary election.
As for another oil refinery in New Mexico (there are now two), we've blogged about hat periodically when the oil companies blame increasing gasoline prices on the lack of refinery capacity. The oil experts say getting more refineries built is problematic because of stringent environmental regulations so they add capacity by expanding existing refineries.
Pearce's proposal merits serious consideration from the "democrat leadership." The resulting jobs would pay well and be more stable than those on the drilling side. Former ABQ Democratic Mayor Jim Baca disagrees:
Pearce's solution to the fate of the state is planet killing fossil fuel. He is ignoring the fact that renewable energy, especially solar, is providing the real future of the country. And yet he wants to leave the Land of Enchantment at the starting gate.
Pearce made his refinery proposal in a speech to the legislature. It can be seen here.
A BIGGER QUESTION
A bigger question than why Sen. Brandt is offering Democratic-like legislation is why are the Democrats allowing the minority party to have any say at all in this session? Dems may have taken over the Roundhouse but GOP senators and reps still strut around like they own the place. They are in every press report on the session and seem to be the more aggressive legislators. If I see any more Democratic legislators, elected officials, mayoral candidates or lobbyists gleefully pose for pictures with Republican Reps Sarah Maestas Barnes, Monica Youngblood or Kelly Fajardo, I'm going to puke.
House Speaker Brian Egolf and Senate Majority Leader Peter Wirth and their associated committee chairs have to learn to flex their muscle. If they don't want to be in power and control this session I'm sure Republican Rep. Nate Gentry and his ilk would gladly take over.
For those new around here, an Alligator is one of our reliable but anonymous political sources who have seen more than their fair share of La Politica and have the instincts and striking speed of a gator.
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(c)NM POLITICS WITH JOE MONAHAN 2017