Local Viewpoints

Local Viewpoints
11:33 am
Sun February 1, 2015

Goodman: Thoughts On Tuesday's School Board Elections

  There's a school-board election set for Tuesday, February 3rd.

   Is anybody still reading? 

   I hope so.  Whom we choose is important – even if we don't have kid or grandkids in the Las Cruces Public School System.  Not only do these folks decide how to spend a bunch of public money, they help determine the educational climate here, which has a bearing on business and quality of life for everyone.

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Local Viewpoints
12:59 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

Sanchez: Governor’s Reports About Benefits Of "Right To Work" Are False

Credit Senate Majority Leader Michael S. Sanchez (D-29- Bernalillo & Valencia).

  Santa Fe, NM –Emails revealing that Governor Susana Martinez’s top political strategists began planning to create misinformation on a key state policy three years ago in order to gain political advantage today drew sharp criticism from Senate Majority Leader Michael S.

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Local Viewpoints
12:53 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

Group Denounces Republican Vote To Remove Driver's Licenses From Undocumented Immigrants

  Somos Un Pueblo Unido, New Mexico's statewide immigrant's rights organization, denounced the dangerous and shameful actions by Republican members of the House Safety and Civil Affairs to move forward two recycled proposals that would take drivers' licenses away from the immigrant parents of up to 100,000 children in New Mexico.

 

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Local Viewpoints
12:30 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

Heinrich: Strengthen Overtime Protections For New Mexico Workers

Credit US Senator Martin Heinrich (D-NM)

  U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) joined a group of 26 senators in supporting updating overtime rules to ensure more middle-class workers are paid fairly for overtime hours. In a letter to President Obama, the senators urged the administration to increase the income threshold to $56,680 per year to strengthen overtime protections for millions more middle-class workers. The current annual salary threshold to receive time-and-a-half pay for overtime hours is $23,660 impacting a mere 11 percent of salaried workers nationwide.

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Local Viewpoints
12:31 pm
Wed January 28, 2015

Goodman: Marriage Equality Should Be Law In Every State

I think “Marriage Equality” will be law throughout the U.S. later this year.          

   The U.S. Supreme Court has been heading that way since 2003, when it prohibited  a Texas law against consensual gay sex in Lawrence v. Texas.  (Justice Antonin Scalia wrote in dissent that after Lawrence, there was no basis for denying same-sex couples the right to marry.)  In 2013 it tossed out federal law defining marriage as between a man and a woman.  In each opinion Justice Anthony Kennedy, writing for the Court, wrote of gay people's dignity and equality. 

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Local Viewpoints
12:29 pm
Wed January 28, 2015

Heinrich, Udall Urge McConnell To Pass Homeland Security Bill Without Targeting DREAMers

Credit US Senator Martin Heinrich (D-NM)

  In a letter, U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich urged Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to pass a clean bill that funds the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for the remainder of the fiscal year.  The letter was signed by forty-five Senators, including two Independents calling for a DHS funding bill without extraneous policy riders attached.  The letter also noted that the President would veto any piece of legislation that would limit his discretion on immigration matters. 
  

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Local Viewpoints
1:13 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Hynes: Spaceport America Requires Support From New Mexico

  The state legislature has been in session for two weeks now. Reports are coming from Santa Fe  about southern New Mexico.  More debate is occurring about the future of our spaceport.  Establishing a new industry like commercial space transportation requires demand for its products and services. Commercial products of the commercial space transportation industry include new launch vehicles, satellites and their related technologies. A new industry also requires leaders who are commitment and have the ability to articulate and advocate.

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Local Viewpoints
1:10 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Education Unions Announce Santa Fe March And Rally

  Albuquerque – The American Federation of Teachers New Mexico (AFT NM) and the National Education Association – New Mexico (NEA-NM) will unite for a Moral Monday March and Rally in Santa Fe Monday, February 16, 2015.   

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Local Viewpoints
6:10 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

Pearce Opposes President's Wilderness Designation In Alaska

Credit Rep. Steve Pearce (R) New Mexico

  President Obama announced that he would unilaterally set aside 12 million acres in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) as wilderness. This announcement comes after last year’s designation of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument -- that locked up nearly 500,000 acres of southern New Mexico.   U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce (NM-02) issued the following statement in response:

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Local Viewpoints
2:48 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

Human Rights Campaign Foundation Commends California Supreme Court For Policy On Boy Scouts

  WASHINGTON - Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the educational arm of the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization, commended the California Supreme Court for barring judges from non-profit youth organizations like the Boy Scouts of America that discriminate against LGBT people - mirroring new standards HRC will require Fortune 500 to meet in its annual Corporate Equality Index (CEI).

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Local Viewpoints
3:55 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

Pearce: SunZia Decision Endangers The Nation

Credit Rep. Steve Pearce (R) New Mexico

  On Saturday, Secretary of the Department of the Interior (DOI) Sally Jewell is expected to sign the record of decision (ROD), approving the construction of the SunZia transmission line (SunZia).  U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce (N.M.-2) issued the following statement in response:

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Local Viewpoints
8:47 am
Thu January 22, 2015

Pearce Votes To Speed Up Natural Gas Permitting

Credit Rep. Steve Pearce (R) New Mexico

  On Wednesday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 161, the Natural Gas Pipeline Permitting Reform Act with a bipartisan vote of 253-169. This bill would accelerate the approval of much needed energy infrastructure projects across the country. U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce (NM-02) released the following statement on his support for and passage of the bill:

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Local Viewpoints
8:45 am
Thu January 22, 2015

Group Blasts Pearce Commentary On Wolf Policy

  As demonstrated yet again by his recent commentary, “Latest Wolf Rule Puts New Mexicans in Danger,” the facts and Rep. Steve Pearce don’t have a very close relationship.

Despite Rep. Pearce’s fear-mongering, expanding the small Mexican gray wolf population of about 100 wolves will hardly put people or their livelihoods in danger, something the congressman could have learned from the hundreds of his constituents who attended a public hearing last August in Truth or Consequences to voice their support for the wolves.

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Local Viewpoints
4:50 pm
Wed January 21, 2015

Rodriguez: Texas Senate Rule Change Escalates Partisanship To A New Level

  Austin -- Senator José Rodríguez issued the following statement upon adjournment of the Texas Senate, which voted today to change its rules in a way that limits minority power, dismissing over 60 years of tradition meant to protect the minority and encourage debate and compromise.

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Local Viewpoints
10:27 am
Wed January 21, 2015

New Mexico Groups Protest Citizens United In Santa Fe

  Santa Fe — NMPIRG, joined today by Common Cause, and Environment New Mexico, gathered at the Roundhouse to mark the fifth anniversary of Citizens United, the infamous decision that birthed Super PACs and opened the floodgates for special interest money in our elections.  The groups called out the flood of big money in elections and put forward solutions to amplify the voice of average Americans. 

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Local Viewpoints
8:44 am
Wed January 21, 2015

Pearce Blasts State Of The Union Address

Credit Rep. Steve Pearce (R) New Mexico

  President Obama delivered his seventh State of the Union (SOTU) since taking office.  In response, U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce (R-N.M.) issued the following statement:

“Hard-working Americans yearn for concrete solutions to our nation’s challenges.  Yet tonight, we heard more out-of-touch rhetoric that neither soothes concerns, nor gives reason for hope,” said Pearce

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Local Viewpoints
8:48 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

Heinrich: President Obama Laid Out A Clear Vision To Help The Middle Class

Credit Senator Martin Heinrich (D) New Mexico

  U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) released the following statement after President Obama's State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress:

"Tonight, the president laid out a clear vision to increase opportunities for all Americans and strengthen our middle class. While our nation's economy is progressing, my priority is to build on that momentum so that New Mexicans working hard to get ahead feel those gains.

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Local Viewpoints
5:13 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

Democrats Respond To The Martinez "State Of The State"

Credit Senate Majority Leader Michael S. Sanchez (D-29- Bernalillo & Valencia).

  Santa Fe, NM – New Mexico Senate Majority Leader Michael Sanchez (D-29-Bernalillo & Valencia) today delivered a Democratic response to Gov.

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Local Viewpoints
4:07 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

Pearce: Latest Wolf Rule Puts New Mexicans In Danger

  Washington, D.C – Last week, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service listed the Mexican Wolf as endangered under the Endangered Species Act and quadrupled its recovery zone in New Mexico.

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Local Viewpoints
3:26 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

New Mexico Immigrant Group Condemns Governor's Sixth Attempt to Repeal Driver's License Law

  Santa Fe, NM--The following is a statement from Somos Un Pueblo Unido regarding the Governor's sixth introduction of a proposal to take away driver's licenses from immigrant residents of New Mexico:

 

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Local Viewpoints
2:07 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

"Right To Work" Is Wrong For New Mexico

Credit alanfornm.com

  In 2015, with Republican Susana Martinez re-elected to a second term as New Mexico’s Governor and Republicans in control of the State House of Representatives for the first time since the Eisenhower 1950s, so-called “right to work” legislation has emerged as one of the highest priorities for the legislative session.

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Local Viewpoints
2:04 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

Goodman: Each Age Has Its Own Contradictions

Edward Bellamy wrote Looking Backward 2000-1887.  A utopian socialist novel, it envisioned a world in which social ills like poverty and illiteracy no longer existed because humankind had outgrown competition as a guiding principle. 

   By 1900 only Uncle Tom's Cabin had outsold Looking Backward among books published in the U.S.  Folks so loved it as an alternative to the abuses of the Gilded Age that around the country 500 Nationalist Clubs sprang up to disseminate Bellamy's ideas.

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Local Viewpoints
8:42 am
Tue January 20, 2015

In Depth: New Mexico Makes Little Progress On Child Well-Being

  ALBUQUERQUE—While New Mexico ranking rose slightly from 50th in 2013 to 49th in 2014 in the national KIDS COUNT rankings of child well-being, state policy makers not have managed to make much progress toward improving how well the state cares for its kids. The KIDS COUNT program measures 16 indicators of child well-being, and New Mexico saw improvement in just five of those. Worse, child poverty—a main factor in poor outcomes—actually increased (from 28 percent to 31 percent) even as it decreased in most of the rest of the nation.

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Local Viewpoints
9:27 am
Mon January 19, 2015

One Year Later, Santa Fe Plastic Bag Ban Is Not Working

  Santa Fe’s ban on plastic bags isn’t making the city greener.

Less than a year after formally implemented the ban, the City Council is now looking for a more effective solution. As recent studies have shown, instead of bringing reusable bags on their shopping trips, Santa Fe citizens have simply traded plastic for paper – nullifying the law’s sustainability objectives.

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Local Viewpoints
2:09 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

More Loan Shark Outlets Than Fast Food Chain Restaurants In New Mexico

There are currently 684 New Mexico small loan licensees* charging 80 to 3,000 percent interest registered with the New Mexico Department of Regulation.  There are only 405 New Mexico fast food locations operated by all the major and minor chains combined.** 

This is the first of many astounding facts about high cost lending that the New Mexico Fair Lending Coalition (NMFLC) will publish daily beginning Wednesday, January 14, and continuing through the close of the 2015 legislative session on March 21. 

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Local Viewpoints
1:44 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

Pearce Votes To End President's Immigration Relief

  Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 240, the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act (DHS), to aggressively tighten national security, combat terrorism, and block President Obama’s executive order granting legal status to over 5 million people living in the U.S. illegally.

In voting for the measure, Congressman Steve Pearce (R.-N.M.) released the following statement:

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Local Viewpoints
12:10 pm
Tue January 13, 2015

Pat Hynes: I Won't Take No For An Answer

  In January we set personal goals for the year, make resolutions in some cases, throw a Hail Mary pass at a difficult problem.  Lose weight, find your new relationship or solve both and join the gym, a Hail Mary pass for sure. Making realistic, specific, measurable goals requires a plan. The plan can create change; take us from our current state to a more desirable future. That’s the purpose of a financial plan for a family, or a strategic plan for a company.

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Local Viewpoints
2:22 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

Conservationists Take Aim At New Rule On Mexican Gray Wolf Management

TUCSON, Ariz.— Conservationists say they’ll fight provisions in a new federal rule that caps the population of endangered Mexican gray wolves in the Southwest at numbers too low for recovery, bans them from needed recovery habitat, and makes it easier for them to be killed. While the U.S.

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Local Viewpoints
9:46 am
Sun January 11, 2015

Goodman: We Are Blessed With A Secular Democracy

Jim Harbison is a fine gentleman, but his recent hit-piece on CAFé relied too much on name-calling and not enough on facts and analysis.

As you likely know, CAFé led the local campaign for a minimum-wage hike. Mr. Harbison writes, “CAFé is a community organizer group (think ACORN).” He alleges no relationship between the two; but ACORN's a code-word in Right-Wing-Speak. It's like saying “Joe is a cop (think Ferguson)."

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Local Viewpoints
4:47 pm
Fri January 9, 2015

Pearce Votes To Approve Keystone XL Pipeline

  Washington, D.C – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 3, the Keystone XL Pipeline Act, to approve construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline.  The measure passed decisively, 266 to 153, with bipartisan support.  H.R. 3 would put an end to the lengthy and unnecessary delay of the Keystone project that has gone on for over six years.  In voting for the measure, Congressman Steve Pearce (R.-N.M.) released the following statement

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