Last fall, voters in southern New Mexico sent an exciting new delegation of progressive champions to Santa Fe to represent us. Now that the 2017 Legislature is coming to a close, let’s check in on some of their successes and how they’ve helped move New Mexico forward!
Congressman Steve Pearce came back to his district (CD2) for a town hall event this past Saturday and ProgressNow NM was there and broadcasting LIVE on Facebook because he held it in Ruidoso, a village of 8,000 people two hours away from Las Cruces, the largest city in his district.
But, Pearce has scheduled a last-minute town hall meeting TOMORROW, March 4th, in Ruidoso. Situated in the heart of Lincoln County, which Pearce won by nearly 75% in 2016, the meeting is likely intended to bolster his image by catering to his base. Scheduled for 9 am on a Saturday, such a meeting is obviously not intended to be very accessible.
Over 200 people arrived at Congressman Steve Pearce’s Las Cruces office on Friday to find that, once again, they were locked out of meeting with his staff. Read more: [Watch] Rep. Steve Pearce (R) office locks constituents out, then sneak out the back door to avoid answering questions on Trump
Local activists associated with the Indivisible movements in Truth or Consequences, Las Cruces, Otero County, Lincoln County, Sierra County, Grant County, and Luna County planned what they called a Mock Town Hall event Friday afternoon. ProgressNow New Mexico staffer Lucas Herndon was on site to bring the event live via Facebook. You can check out footage of the whole event here:
Constituents who arrived to schedule appointments with the Congressman found the door blocked by private security officers. In response, the group chose to organize a protest, eventually lining up again to knock on the door to request meetings.
In a 6-1 vote yesterday, the City of Las Cruces sent a resounding message to President Trump: No border wall in our backyard. Las Cruces is the county seat of Doña Ana County which shares 62 miles of its southern border with Mexico. The treaty which ended hostilities between the two countries in 1848 was signed in Mesilla, the village just west of Las Cruces and at the time, still a part of Mexico. The resolution, introduced by Mayor pro-tem Greg Smith, states among other points, “Whereas, the economic, historic, and cultural connections between our part of the United States and just across the border in Mexico is underscored by the families whose members have been connected across this region for hundreds of years before there was a border between the modern countries of the United States and Mexico.”
The dissenting vote was cast, unsurprisingly, by perennial conservative Ceil Levatino. Levatino didn’t hold back her contempt for those speaking against the wall by making a condescending joke about such a wall “becoming a tourist destination” and by glibly referencing the Bracero program, which drew harsh murmurs from the audience and a slew of angry Twitter comments.
In a step toward a more open and transparent government, Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver launched a new online resource today aimed at tracking the financial interests of elected officials around the state. Financial Disclosure Documents have been a part of public service in New Mexico for years but were previously only available in hard copies found in Santa Fe.
Earlier this week we asked you to reach out to Sen. Mary Kay Papen and ask her to pull her bill SB 182 which would have laid the groundwork for public lands in New Mexico to be sold off. You listened and you responded. Over 370 people sent emails and countless more signed, shared, and posted our call to action.
And today, Senator Papen gave a brief statement to the Senate Education committee (where she referenced all the input she’d received) and asked that the bill be tabled. SB 182 has now died in committee!
This Wednesday the Senate Education Committee will hear testimony about selling off state trust lands to fund early childhood education. SB 182 would see public lands in the state sold to Big Oil and Gas and close access for millions of land users. You can help stop that from happening.
Over 500 New Mexicans rallied around the Capital in support of Public Lands on Wednesday, brought together by the threats of Trump administration supporters who are calling for federal lands to be sold off to the highest bidder.
The overwhelming response from those in attendance and the legislators who spoke in the rotunda: Not in New Mexico.