This Day In New Mexico History - January 27

On this day in New Mexico history - January 27, 1838 - the final battle of the was known as The Revolt of 1837, also known as the Chimayó Rebellion - was fought under the guidance of three term governor Manuel Armijo who ended up technically the last Mexican Governor of New Mexico when the United States took over ten years later. The rebellion started in August 1837 when disaffected residents of the northern part of New Mexico assassinated then Governor Albino Pérez and took over the state. Many people in the southern part opposed the new government. Former governor Manuel Armijo, who was born in Albuquerque, lead a counterrevolution. In the fall of 1837 he marched to Santa Fe and declared himself governor. Armijo wrote to the Mexican government requesting federal troops. Those troops from Veracruz, Mexico arrived in early January 1838. A few weeks later the rebellion flared up again and Armijo led the force that defeated the rebels at Pojoaque. Of note: when the American forces ten years later came to New Mexico Armijo did not fight them and ended up living the rest of his life in Limitar, NM which is six miles north of Socorro, NM

Justice Dept. Seeks to Have All Web Surfing Tracked

From -Mandatory data retention 'raises serious privacy and free speech concerns' WASHINGTON — The US Justice Department wants Internet service providers and cell phone companies to be required to hold on to records for longer to help with criminal prosecutions. "Data retention is fundamental to the department's work in investigating and prosecuting almost every type of crime," US deputy assistant attorney general Jason Weinstein told a congressional subcommittee on Tuesday. "Some records are kept for weeks or months; others are stored very briefly before being purged," Weinstein said in remarks prepared for delivery to the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security. He said Internet records are often "the only available evidence that allows us to investigate who committed crimes on the Internet." More here

Google Comes Under Fire for ‘Secret’ Relationship with NSA

From -Consumer Watchdog, an advocacy group largely focused in recent years on Google's privacy practices, has called on a congressional investigation into the Internet giant's "cozy" relationship with U.S. President Barack Obama's administration. In a letter sent Monday, Consumer Watchdog asked Representative Darrell Issa, the new chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, to investigate the relationship between Google and several government agencies. The group asked Issa to investigate contracts at several U.S. agencies for Google technology and services, the "secretive" relationship between Google and the U.S. National Security Agency, and the company's use of a U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration airfield in California. Federal agencies have also taken "insufficient" action in response to revelations last year that Google Street View cars were collecting data from open Wi-Fi connections they passed, Consumer Watchdog said in the letter. "We believe Google has inappropriately benefited from close ties to the administration," the letter said. "Google is most consumers' gateway to the Internet. Nonetheless, it should not get special treatment and access because of a special relationship with the administration." More here

Andy Nunez to Appear on NewsNM

Andy Nunez
Andy Nunez, the only true "Independent" in the entire New Mexico legislature is scheduled to appear on News New Mexico Thursday morning. Nunez has been a major newsmaker in the state since early November of 2010 when House Republicans gained eight new seats in the legislature. Nunez (Hatch - I) became a vocal backer of the removal of current speaker Ben Lujan during the Democratic Party Caucus in late November. At one point in early 2011 it appeared that the votes were in place for Representative Joseph Cervantes to replace Lujan with the help of votes from House Republicans. However, in the end, the bi-partisan coalition that would haved ended Lujan's reign fell apart. The collapse was due in great part to last minute efforts by Tea Party groups from Las Cruces and around the state.
Many Tea Party members had deep reservations about Cervantes, particularly over his positions on allowing same-day voter registrations and issuing driver's licenses to illegal aliens. Eventually, pressures from the Tea Party acted as a catalyst. Both Democrats and Republicans united strictly along party lines and the final vote for Speaker was 36 for Ben Lujan and 33 for GOP  leader Tom Taylor. Of note was a single abstention. The lone "present" vote came from Andy Nunez. Quickly Speaker Lujan made Nunez the sacrificial lamb in the aftermath of the vote. Nunez, who had experienced major committee disruptions at the hands of Lujan in recent years, was promptly removed from his chairman post on the House Agriculture Committee. We will talk to the lone truly "independent" voice in the New Mexico legislature at 7:00am on News New Mexico.


Mayor Richard Berry to Appear on NewsNM

Richard Berry
Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry is on the guest list for News New Mexico Thursday morning. It will be the Mayor's first appearance on the show. Topics for discussion will be the City of Albuquerque's hopes for the ongoing legislative session in Santa Fe. Also up for discussion will be the status and potential impact of the so-called "hold harmless" agreement related to Albuquerques's gross receipts taxes. The issue has been estimated to be worth more than $38 million for city coffers. Mayor Berry is scheduled for 7:30am.


Senate Bill #1

Michael Sanchez
Capitol Report New Mexico - It’s the first bill formally introduced by the New Mexico State Senate in this legislative session and by the time the 60-day session is over, it could be ranked No. 1 in the amount of debate generated as lawmakers try just about everything to tackle the state’s budget deficit. It’s Senate Bill 1 — The Recovery Investment Bonding Act – and has been introduced by Sen. Michael Sanchez (D-Belen), who believes that most — if not all — budget cuts can be eliminated should this legislation pass. But critics — including the administration of Gov. Susana Martinez – says it merely papers over the state’s budget problems. Here’s how the bill works: The state would issue up to $300 million in bonds from New Mexico’s permanent funds through the State Investment Council (SIC). The state could then use that money to pay off the deficit. To repay the permanent fund dollars, New Mexico would pledge future proceeds from the state gross receipts tax over a five-year period. Read full story here:

Williams: Can Our Nation Be Saved?

Walter Williams
Townhall - National debt is over $14 trillion, the federal budget deficit is $1.4 trillion and, depending on whose estimates are used, the unfunded liability or indebtedness of the federal government (mostly in the form of obligations for Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and prescription drugs) is estimated to be between $60 and $100 trillion. Those entitlements along with others account for nearly 60 percent of federal spending. They are what Congress calls mandatory or non-discretionary spending. Then there's discretionary spending, half of which is for national defense. Each year, non-discretionary spending consumes a higher and higher percent of the federal budget. Read full column here:

NM Supreme Court Backs EIB

New York Times - The New Mexico Supreme Court’s rebuke to Susana Martinez, the state’s new governor was blunt. “No one is above the law,” the state’s chief justice, Charles W. Daniels said Wednesday morning as he announced the high court’s decision to reinstate two environmental regulations that the governor had unilaterally blocked upon taking office earlier this month. Gov. Susana Martinez. In a unanimous decision, the court ordered that the rules — one requiring annual 3 percent cuts in greenhouse gas emissions and another aimed at controlling waste discharges from the state’s dairies — must be published in the state’s register, which will make them effective. Governor Martinez had forbidden the register from publishing the rules. Read full story here:

Governor Martinez, Acting on the Advice of Taxpayers

Governor Martinez
SANTA FE – Governor Susana Martinez made the following statement after announcing that she is taking action on numerous cost-saving measures proposal by the people of New Mexico. After inviting her fellow New Mexicans to submit their spending cuts through, the Governor’s office received over 1,250 responses and examined each suggestion. Today, Governor Martinez announced that she would implement the first of these proposals during a press conference at the Roundhouse. “It should come as little surprise that when we asked for ideas to cut government spending from everyday New Mexicans, rather than politicians and bureaucrats, the response was overwhelming,” said Governor Martinez. Read rest of story here:


Nunez Makes it Official - Declines to State

Andy Nunez
In accordance with a report by News New Mexico on Sunday morning, Representative Andy Nunez of Hatch joined the ranks of those who “decline to state” a party preference yesterday. In New Mexico “declining to state” is as close as one can come to being identified as an “INDEPENDENT.” Because the basic assumption of New Mexico law and the rules of the legislature are so steeped in the idea of party caucuses, the state does not even bother to formally recognize the term, “independent.” Nunez will not caucus with the Democrats or the GOP. He will appear as our guest tommorrow on News New Mexico.


The Real "State" of the "Union"

Prior to 2006 Democrats spent six years attempting to portray themselves as the biggest DEFICIT HAWKS in the history of the nation. On an ongoing basis, Dems lamented the increases in the federal debt limits under George W. Bush. Then Senator Obama was particularly adamant about the dangers of the nation's borrowing habits. Obama is seen issuing shrill debt ceiling warnings just five years ago. In 2006 the political tide changed. All finger-pointing aside, until early January 2011, Congressional Democrats had controlled both houses of Congress in Washington for the previous five years. The last two years, the Democrats controlled all three branches of the federal government.
Obama - Nobel Prize
Since their big election win in 2006, there has been a steady a drumbeat of push from leading Democrats for a variety of policies that can be simply described as “borrow and spend.” It is true that from a political standpoint Dems were mostly successful in blaming Bush for deficits run up between 2006 and 2008. And there is no denying that President George W. Bush did little to thwart the Dem's successful push over the final two years of his presidency to borrow and blow the taxpayer's money. However, it seems quite apparent in the wake of President Obama’s latest “State of the Union” address that plenty of “poll checking" and “focus grouping” was done by the political advisers in the administration about how it might continue to get away with brazen fiscal recklessness.
Obama and his adviser's goal is NOT to retreat from a “borrow and spend” approach to governing. The goal is to “re-brand” the "borrow and spend" method of policy-making. The real message delivered to America in the State of the Union address was not the result of a following through on a sincere and heartfelt concern for national bankruptcy. White House political advisers simply do not care what a continuation of "borrow and spend" government policies will do to America. Their only goal in concocting the language included in last night's State of the Union address was to convince the average listener and viewer that the federal government actually knows the difference between “investing” and “spending.” It was a sad night for America.
In the wake of financial disasters under the watch of Democrats and Republicans, once again the most prominent elected official in the land (Obama) stood before the American public and attempted to convince his increasingly restless flock that bureaucrats in Washington know how to invest better than the average citizens does. And in doing so, he gave the clearest signal yet that nothing has changed in America except the words “Focus Group” experts and “Poll Check” manipulators can identify as “words” that will placate the herd. The cynical hope of most of our leaders is that there is still an ever-gullible American public ready to swallow more of anything except a SPECIFIC shift towards meaningful entitlement reform. Are we really as dumb as they hope we are? We have been so far.


State of the Union

Washington Times - Picking a fight with his own party, President Obama on Tuesday called for ending earmark spending and proposed a five-year partial budget freeze in his first State of the Union address before a Congress packed with newly ascendant Republicans eager to cut even more deeply. In a broad 62-minute speech in which he called for rejuvenating America’s innovative spirit — what he called “our generation’s Sputnik moment” — Mr. Obama said the economy is beginning to bounce back, and said now is the time to push forward with a job-growing agenda. But even as he promised to rein in spending, Mr. Obama vowed to invest in roads and infrastructure, to revamp education and to simplify the corporate and personal income-tax codes, calling the moves a down payment on longer-term fiscal moves to restore the country’s finances. “Now that the worst of the recession is over, we have to confront the fact that our government spends more than it takes in.
That is not sustainable,” Mr. Obama said. “Every day, families sacrifice to live within their means. They deserve a government that does the same.” Still, the speech struck many of the same themes the president has pitched over the last year: His spending freeze is simply an extension of an earlier three-year pledge, and his call for an infrastructure bank is a reworking of a widely panned idea he proposed four months ago. And it comes at a time when Republicans, who now control the House, are in a position to scuttle those parts of his agenda they oppose, and to push for him to go further on spending cuts. Read full story here:


NM Delegation Responds provides coverage of the statements released by members of the New Mexico delegation following President Barack Obama’s State of the Union Address here:

Bachmann: Promises, Promises

Michele Bachmann
Tea Party member Michele Bachmann offered remarks after last night's State of the Union address by President Obama. She characterized policymaking by Obama since he took office two years agos as an "Unprecedented explosion of government spending and debt." Bachmann also pointed to the implementation of Obamacare as more of the same saying, "In the end, unless we fully repeal ObamaCare, a nation that currently enjoys the world's best healthcare may be forced to rely on government-run coverage that will have a devastating impact on our national debt for generations to come." Clearly Bachmann was not impressed with the efficacy of the president's ideas for investment adding, "For two years President Obama made promises just like the ones we heard him make tonight. Yet still we have high unemployment, devalued housing prices and the cost of gasoline is skyrocketing." Bachmann managed to find optimism in the sea of debt. "I believe that we are in the early days of a history-making turn. ... We believe in lower taxes, a limited view of government and the exceptionalism of America. And I believe America is the indispensable nation. Just the creation of this nation was a miracle. Who's to say that we can't see a miracle again?" Bachmann said. Bachmann did not mention her Tea Party affiliation during her response.


Excerpts of GOP Response to State of Union

Paul Ryan
Congressman Paul Ryan offered a response to President Obama's State of the Union speech last night. The following is an important segment on the debt situation. -- "No one person or party is responsible for it. There is no doubt the President came into office facing a severe fiscal and economic situation.Unfortunately, instead of restoring the fundamentals of economic growth, he engaged in a stimulus spending spree that not only failed to deliver on its promise to create jobs, but also plunged us even deeper into debt. The facts are clear: Since taking office, President Obama has signed into law spending increases of nearly 25% for domestic government agencies – an 84% increase when you include the failed stimulus. All of this new government spending was sold as “investment.” Yet after two years, the unemployment rate remains above 9% and government has added over $3 trillion to our debt. Then the President and his party made matters even worse, by creating a new open-ended health care entitlement.
What we already know about the President’s health care law is this: Costs are going up, premiums are rising, and millions of people will lose the coverage they currently have. Job creation is being stifled by all of its taxes, penalties, mandates and fees. Businesses and unions from around the country are asking the Obama Administration for waivers from the mandates. Washington should not be in the business of picking winners and losers. The President mentioned the need for regulatory reform to ease the burden on American businesses. We agree – and we think his health care law would be a great place to start. Last week, House Republicans voted for a full repeal of this law, as we pledged to do, and we will work to replace it with fiscally responsible, patient-centered reforms that actually reduce costs and expand coverage. Health care spending is driving the explosive growth of our debt. And the President’s law is accelerating our country toward bankruptcy."


Pearce Responds to State of the Union

Steve Pearce
Washington, DC (January 25, 2011) Congressman Steve Pearce issued the following statement in response to tonight’s State of the Union Address: “Tonight, in his State of the Union Address, President Obama discussed jobs and the economy. I am sincerely pleased to hear him begin to take an interest in what the people have been concerned about for years. Now begins the difficult task of transforming words into reality. We need real job creation and Washington needs to get its budget under control. While I am hopeful, the challenge comes with the specific policies our country and New Mexico need. I look forward to cooperating on the good ideas, especially those that will create jobs in New Mexico.

“Mr. Obama proposed spending freezes, but it is important to remember that over the last two years, the deficit has for the first time in history surpassed $1 trillion. It has now skyrocketed to $1.4 trillion. Freezing spending at the current record-breaking levels only means we will be stuck there. It will make spending reduction impossible, and it will force us to lock in our mistakes. We must return spending to pre-2008 levels, and then continue to seek reductions. “As I travel around New Mexico, I see the impact of our economic crisis. Unemployment in New Mexico remains high, and has been climbing since President Obama took office. When I was there last weekend, I met with many New Mexicans who find themselves unemployed. Our small-business owners are being forced to lay off workers or make painful cuts to survive. Our retirees are watching their hard-earned savings lose value, and are wondering if they will have enough. Our veterans, living on fixed incomes, are finding it harder to get by. On a regular basis, I look into the eyes of these hard working people and see fear. Fear of financial uncertainty. Fear that they will have to close down the businesses they spent their lives building. Fear that they will be unable to support their families.
“New Mexicans are still struggling. Americans are still struggling. All they want is the freedom to work, to support their families, to pursue happiness. Tonight, I was heartened to hear the president convey his concern for those desires. I am especially encouraged by his goal of putting Americans back to work. Now, as we begin the hard work of transforming words into actions, we must remember the true needs of Americans. “We need to be heard. We need jobs. We need liberty. And we need a government that will fight for these…that will fight for us.”