31 August 2012
Pro-Custer RNC Official Resigns Firm Post, Under Pressure
Resignation comes after week of pressure from ProgressNow NM and Activists
ALBUQUERQUE – Multiple New Mexico news outlets are now reporting that Pat Rogers, the embattled lawyer, lobbyist, and state Republican National Committeeman, has resigned his position as Vice President of Modrall Sperling law firm following public pressure from ProgressNow New Mexico, as well as Native, Hispanic, and LGBT communities.
The controversy began last week after ProgressNow NM publicized a June 8, 2012 email Rogers sent to senior members of Governor Susana Martinez’s staff. In the email, Rogers says that “The state is going to hell” and claims that Governor Martinez “dishonored” the memory of George Armstrong Custer – the notorious U.S. Army commander who killed scores of Native peoples during the Indian Wars of the mid-19th Century – by meeting with New Mexico’s tribal leaders at the annual state-tribal leaders summit.
Last Friday, ProgressNow New Mexico began a petition signing campaign calling for the Republican National Committee to denounce Rogers’ remarks and dismiss him from his post. Yesterday, ProgressNow New Mexico organized a press conference and protest outside of Rogers’ law firm, Modrall Sperling, where concerned citizens from a diverse array of communities delivered more than 700 petitions calling for Rogers’ resignation. “Here in New Mexico…we cherish all of our communities and to be so contemptuous toward Native Americans is inappropriate,” said Laurie Weahkee of the Native American Voters Alliance after the press conference.
“As the face of New Mexico’s Republican Party and a lobbyist for a number of corporations that do business on tribal lands, Mr. Rogers’ derogatory remarks are particularly insulting and have no place in modern discussions of politics and policy. We wish Mr. Rogers the best in his future endeavors and hope that he will also see fit to step aside from his postition representing New Mexico to the nation through his Republican Party post,” said Pat Davis, Executive Director of ProgressNow New Mexico.
In July, Rogers also resigned from his board position at the New Mexico Foundation for Open Government after the Independent Source PAC discovered Rogers had been using a private email address to conduct what should have been public communications.
Read the official announcement of Pat Rogers’ Modrall Sperling resignation below: