As more and more stories come out about how New Mexico’s conservative “small-government” government officials are overseeing an economy where businesses are closing, unemployment is the nation’s highest, poverty is rising, and child well-being indicators are in the dirt, it’s important to know who is pushing back and standing up for New Mexico’s working families. “UTC Aerospace to close in ABQ; 150 to lose jobs” [Read] “Major … Continue reading These leaders are fighting for NM’s working families. Thank them!
Meet New Mexico’s most corporate legislator: Rep. Nate Gentry.
Republican House Majority Leader Gentry is the architect for most of the failed ideas coming out of the House on crime, education, the economy, and jobs this session.
Now, new research from ProgressNow NM shows that Gentry might just be New Mexico’s most corporate legislator: since the 2014 elections that put Republicans in charge of the House, Gentry took over $160,000 from corporations and wealthy special interests.
If Republicans in the State House get their way, New Mexico’s prisons are about to get a lot more crowded – and profitable. 6,849 New Mexicans are incarcerated in the state’s prison on any one day, according to the state’s Corrections Department. In it’s mission to reform inmates, some inmates participate in Corrections Industries jobs building furniture, making uniforms and providing low-wage labor for projects … Continue reading NM posts record prison profits ahead of new GOP push for more incarceration
We know. Nowadays it seems like legislators in Santa Fe spend more time not doing than doing. Most everyone who follows New Mexico politics points to the introduction of slash and burn politics by the new wing of the Republican Party, led by Governor Martinez and, more recently, new Republican Majority Leader Nate Gentry. Gentry has made this legislative session not about creating jobs, fighting … Continue reading [Quick Action: Say Thanks!] That one time a State Senator sent 100,000 NM students to college
- Private prison corporation gives big to Republicans ahead of ‘more prisons’ agenda
- Mega-donation helped fund attack ads against Democrats
- 93% of GEO Group donations go to Republicans
- Private prison group says more incarceration is needed to maintain profits
- New Mexico Republicans buck national trend and call for more prison terms
Reporting from Santa Fe – Just five weeks before House Republicans seized control of the lower chamber of the state legislature in November 2014, a Florida-based private prison company quietly donated $5,200 to a Republican Super-PAC which was set to launch a series of high-profile, and factually inaccurate, negative ads smearing two female incumbent Democratic representatives in the tightest races that election season.
That initial $5,200 contribution from Geo Group, Inc. came on October 1. It was followed five days later by another mega-donation of $25,000. It was the largest PAC donation ever from one of the state’s two largest private prison corporations.
Since those ads helped Republicans win control of the State House for the first time in 60 years, Republican legislators have introduced a record number of bills aimed at adding new penalties and prison sentences to all sorts of crimes.
As the party in power, they’ve fast-tracked those crime bills by sending them to the Senate with little debate from the House – many do not even have required fiscal impact reports to show how much these new proposals will cost taxpayers.
And they’ve done it at the expense of other programs. To increase funding to prisons in a year with zero budget growth, Republicans used budget tools called “sweeps” to take money from other departments. Offered the chance to add money to preventive programs like job creation and intervention through amendments to the budget, Republicans voted no on a Democratic amendment to provide new funding for family services in CYFD and rural job training programs.
Private prisons house approximately 40-percent of New Mexico’s prison population, but stand to lose hundreds of beds, and the associated dollars, over the next decade if crime prevention, intervention and diversion programs are enacted in New Mexico as they have been in dozens of states across the country.
Want to know how all this came to be? Here’s what you need to know.
Republicans in New Mexico’s House of Representatives claim to put kids first but their actions show differently. Take Rep. Kelly Fajardo for example. Already during this legislative session she’s joined her fellow Republicans on multiple party-line votes against New Mexico’s schoolchildren. In a committee vote this week Fajardo voted against investing in early childhood education for New Mexico’s kids. With that vote, she stood against 66% … Continue reading Why does Kelly Fajardo keep voting against kids??
Governor Martinez’s help isn’t quite so helpful these days. West Virginia’s gubernatorial candidate Bill Cole, a Republican, was the subject of a Democratic party press release today after he asked New Mexico’s Governor Susana Martinez to validate his candidacy with her endorsement. Martinez’s endorsement was pretty much expected for a Republican candidate for governor. She is the chairwoman of the National Republican Governors Association and that makes … Continue reading W Va Gov Gets Hit for Endorsement by “disgraced” “pizza party” NM Gov
What are New Mexicans saying about the legislature? We’re reading newspapers statewide to see. Here are a few examples. “Right-to-Work” Kills Education Gallup Independent, Feb. 2, 2016 If you’ve followed the debate about so-called “right-to-work” laws possibly passing the New Mexico legislature this year, you’ve probably heard the statistics about how workers are paid less and unemployment is consistently higher in states with these … Continue reading What New Mexicans are saying about the legislature