Janice Arnold-Jones went on Fox News and insinuated that because Deb Haaland, her Democratic opponent in Congressional District 1, did not grow up on the Pueblo of Laguna reservation, aka The Rez, that Deb cannot claim that she is Native. This is another striking example of how removed Janice and other non-Native people are from the complicated history of Native Americans, not just in the district she wants to represent, but across New Mexico and the nation. Janice, what you said on national television is racist and here’s why. Federally recognized tribes in this country have jumped through endless hoops and faced extreme prejudice just to achieve recognition from the federal government to access healthcare and education promised them under the myriad treaties foisted on them by the United States of America. Tribes have land held “in trust” with the federal government and must receive permission to use their own land.
Yesterday, we introduced you to Pat Rogers, the itinerant Republican lawyer who seems committed to stopping progress at every turn in and around Albuquerque. We started our series with a synopsis of Rogers’ peculiar schemes to kill ABQ Democracy Dollars at the Bernalillo County Commision. But the bigger story is that just about every time community organizers in Albuquerque fight to return some agency to the people over corporate interests, or to boost the well-being of workers over big business profits, Pat Rogers is on hand like the grim reaper. Only a lot more smug. But his ability to swing citizen initiatives isn’t done in a vacuum. The voting members of the county commission and city council are culpable, even some Democrats.
“Why I only got a problem when you in the hood?” -Kanye West, The Good Life
That was the theme of last week’s Bernalillo County Commission meeting when several commissioners threw a bizarre curveball at what should have been an otherwise homerun for democracy in Albuquerque and eventually statewide. In the preceding months, over 28,000 Burqueños had signed a petition to put the ABQ Democracy Dollars initiative on the November ballot and organizers had followed the process “to a T.” Excitement about the campaign was buzzing and on the night of the hearing, supporters packed the commission chambers. Only one individual showed up to oppose the measure – attorney Pat Rogers. But that’s when Commissioners Steven Michael Quezada and Jim Smith, along with the help of County Attorney Kenny Martinez (formerly NM State House Speaker), performed a charade of question and answer about the initiative’s content (kinda like the mailman debating whether to deliver the shirt you ordered because it’s not his style) – and ultimately blocked the initiative (2-2). So who is Pat Roger’s and how did his presence relate?
As Albuquerque prepares for vote on being Immigrant Friendly City, some reminders from activists who protested AG Sessions last week
Tonight (Monday, April 16), Albuquerque city councilors are expected to vote on whether or not to reaffirm that the state’s largest city will remain an “Immigrant Friendly City.” Despite the verbose and hateful rhetoric from the Trump administration threatening cities and states with the moral aptitude to
Last week, Attorney General Jeff Sessions brought his anti-immigrant, white supremacist views to Las Cruces where he spoke to a conference of sheriffs from counties in the borderland regions of the Southwest. He was met with more protestors outside than there were attendees of the event inside which made national and international headlines. Oh, and then there were the disruptors. Five folks from the community made their way into the hotel where Sessions was speaking and after being told they could not listen to what Sessions had to say, huddled up closely, locked arms, and began chanting: NO JUSTICE!
There is a deadline on the horizon that is supremely important to thousands of New Mexicans. This time of year many folks are focused on the calendar for holiday purposes. ProgressNow New Mexico, however, wants you to quickly turn your attention to your health. As we head into the last days of 2017, the days are even fewer in regards to how many you have to make a decision about your health coverage.
Another day, another harsh rebuke of the Republican agenda and the Trump-style tactics that have become the norm for conservative candidates up and down the ballot in New Mexico and across the nation.
Beginning in December, the shared office space of ProgressNow NM, the Center for Civic Policy, and America Votes will hang its first art “show.”
“Our community is rich with art and culture. ProgressNow and our partners are thrilled to have an opportunity to help connect local artists with our work, and our work with local artists.,” said ProgressNow NM’s incoming Executive Director, Stephanie Maez. Speaking on behalf of the Progressive Alliance she continued, We are fortunate to have physical space available for this project and are excited to be present on a daily basis with the work of our community’s talented artists.”
Understanding well that artists in our community are some of the hardest working activists and community organizers – the organizations have decided to showcase that reality and give talented local artists prime real estate. The Progressive Alliance (PNNM, CCP, and AV) serves as civic engagement partner to more than 90 ally organizations – it is a busy office frequented by individuals from all walks fighting to ensure all New Mexico’s families have the same economic and educational opportunities, that our communities are safe, that our democracy is fair and policies passed represent the richness of our culture. .
Behind the curtain of the Koch operations: local campaign disclosures provide window on Koch campaigns (if you know where to look)
Charles and David Koch spent $960 million in the 2016 elections, mostly on campaigns attacking progressive candidates and causes. But because much of that money flows through non-profits and PACs, their fingerprints are often hard to identify and their playbook is even harder to pin down. But thanks to some of the country’s most progressive campaign disclosure laws, their local Americans for Prosperity chapter disclosed their ads, scripts and spendings in recent local elections – if you know where to find it. Since ProgressNow New Mexico started in 2011 we’ve been tracking the influence of corporate-backed right-wing astroturf organizations who come into our state trying to influence our elections. The Koch Brothers and their affiliated organizations – Americans for Prosperity and the LIBRE Initiative – are some of the worst offenders. They do this in a variety of ways.
We are entering into a pivotal time in New Mexico. In Albuquerque, citizens are approaching a runoff in the mayoral race as well as in city council district 5. And in Las Cruces, municipal elections for three city councilors and a municipal judge are happening now. We’ve all seen what happens when progressive voters assume elections are already won and decide to stay home. In New Mexico’s two most populous cities, progressive voters could be the largest voting blocs, but traditionally under-perform in city elections. Now, more than ever, your local candidates are counting on your vote. Albuquerque: Citywide runoff, now through Nov.
[WATCH] Sandoval County commission takes first steps to enact Koch anti-union law; right-to-work fights move from Roundhouse to counties
We reported earlier this year about the Koch Brothers and Americans For Prosperity and their meddling in ALL levels of New Mexico politics.
An update to the current situation of their involvement in things they shouldn’t be involved in shows that Sandoval County is the current target for a Right-To-Work ordinance to be forced onto New Mexican families.
Late last week, the Sandoval County Commission held a heavily attended meeting about imposing a county level Right-To-Work ordinance. Thursday night’s meeting was filled with supporters from Sandoval County at large, including Representative Damon Ely who spoke in opposition to Right-To-Work, emphasizing the educational opportunities and fair wages that unions provide in a state in dire need of these things.
The race for mayor is headed to a run-off; but no matter who you voted for yesterday, the choice before us now is clear: we need a mayor who will push for reform of our police department, champions inclusion and opportunity and recommits city hall to community from the top down.