Local Viewpoints

KRWG welcomes you to join our community discussion.  E-mail your comments to:  feedback @  Comments included here represent the views of the individual writers and do not necessarily represent the views of KRWG or New Mexico State University.

President Trump: Keep DACA in Place

Jul 18, 2017

Commentary: Washington, DC – The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, the initiative that has provided deportation relief and work permits for nearly 800,000 young undocumented immigrants, is under attack. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has threatened the Trump Administration: if DACA isn’t ended by September 5th, he will sue to block it before a federal judge named Andrew Hanen, the notoriously anti-immigrant judge who blocked DAPA. Paxton seems to have a willing ally Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who has long opposed DACA.

Politics Is American Religion

Jul 17, 2017

Commentary: There was a time not long ago when people were not totally obsessed with politics and political soap opera. Local and state elections came along and people learned about the candidates for a few weeks and voted and that was it. The presidential race came along less frequently and you’d see the candidates on the evening news for a few weeks before the election and then you voted and that was it. You didn’t see or hear much about these folks beyond that and everyone else out in the real world was quite fine getting on with their lives.

peter goodman


  Commentary: Yesterday's wonder was a bright rainbow at the top of the Organ Mountains. (God's comment to the Interior Department on keeping our monument as is?) Cameraless, I tried to capture the image with my cell phone, but hadn't a clue how to zoom in.


Amid Threats, Texas Advocates Double Down to Defend DACA

Jul 14, 2017
Attorney General Jeff Sessions (R)

Commentary: Austin, TX – Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly told members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus during a meeting this week that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program is under threat and at the mercy of anti-immigrant Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

Should we make fun of people who don’t recognize the Declaration of Independence?

National Public Radio has a tradition of reading the entire Declaration of Independence on the 4th of July. This year, NPR decided to expand the tradition to social media. They shared the entire document, 140 characters at a time, on Twitter. That’s 113 posts, in case you were wondering.

Lennes: Shocked At Governor's Stance On Monument

Jul 14, 2017

Commentary: I am shocked at Governor Susana Martinez's  anti-Monument stand. In 1947, President Harry Truman warned us about people like Governor Martinez and anti-wilderness Congressman Steve Pearce: “The battle for conservation cannot be limited to the winning of new conquests. Like liberty itself, conservation must be fought for unceasingly to protect earlier victories. There are always plenty of hogs who are trying to get natural resources for their own personal benefit ….


  Commentary:  ALEC, the secretive organization marrying corporations and legislators to create pro-corporate bills, named its New Mexico state chairperson their “Chair of the Year” in 2015 for her work pushing corporate agendas through the State Legislature.

Now its 2017 and she plans to use all that state legislative experience as a platform to run for Congress in the open Congressional seat vacated by Steve Pearce who just announced he is running for governor in 2018. 

Who is Yvette Herrell?

Scott Krahling- Doña Ana County Clerk

Commentary: At Tuesday’s meeting of the Doña Ana County Board of Commissioners, County Clerk Scott Krahling announced his support for New Mexico Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver’s decision to protect the privacy of New Mexico voters by denying a request made by the Trump Administration’s 

Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas)

  Commentary: Washington, D.C. – Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell today unveiled his third version of the Republican Plan to replace and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Despite some modest adjustments designed to entice wavering Senators, the core is still the same: it would drastically restructure and defund Medicaid, take away coverage from tens-of-millions, and drive up health care costs for millions more.

Senate Health Bill Would Harm Our Children

Jul 12, 2017

Commentary: As Congress takes a break from their work, I am deeply concerned over the impact that Trumpcare may have on children in  New Mexico.   As a teacher, I have seen the ravages of lack of health care for my students.  Many of the issues that affect our students from engaging in school is the fact that their medical needs are not being met, lacking immunizations and consistent medical and dental care.  New Mexico has a low ranking on child well-being.  Since the implementation of ACA, there has been better healthcare access, with more children getting the care that keeps them health

The Open Internet Must Be Protected

Jul 12, 2017
Rep. Raul M. Grijalva

Commentary: WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressional Progressive Caucus Co-Chairs Rep Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ) and Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI) made the following statement today on the “Day of Action to Save Net Neutrality.”

Researching NAFTA

Jul 11, 2017
Santa Teresa, New Mexico

Commentary: On May 18, President Donald Trump’s U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer formerly notified Congress that he would be renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with partners Mexico and Canada. With this notice, the administration can begin renegotiations after 90 days. Even though the overwhelming majority of economists tout the value of international trade and the benefits that accrue to the U.S., NAFTA has been made a lightning rod in political battles.

Zinke: Public Comments Will Help Inform Monument Recommendations

Jul 11, 2017
Interior Sec. Ryan Zinke

  Commentary: On Monday, July 10, the formal public comment period closed for the review of national monuments. More than 1.2 million comments were received on and thousands more were received via traditional mail.

What is Trump’s Agenda?

Jul 11, 2017

Commentary: I recently read short histories on despots like Hitler, Mussolini and Napoleon. They all gained power with minority support—but once they had that power they set up a state controlled press and isolated their critics, either by eliminating them or discrediting their ideas. Just like Putin has done in Russia. Every President since WW II has recognized the evil intent of leaders in the former Soviet Union and today’s Russia—except Trump.

Four Corners Power Plant. Photo courtesy of EcoFlight and San Juan Citizens Alliance

Commentary: Yesterday an array of New Mexicans and Four Corners area residents testified in Washington DC against a delay of the EPA's methane pollution standards. The agency should have implemented the Leak Detection and Repair aspect of the rule at the beginning of June, but attempted to stay these rules for 90-days, and action which a DC court denied. The Washington hearings are part of an additional, formal public process to delay the rule for 2 years.

  Commentary: Make no mistake about it. The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program is threatened as never before. Led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, a group of anti-immigrant hardliners  – in and out of government  – are demanding that President Trump kill DACA by September 5th.

Pearce: I’m Running For Governor To Change New Mexico’s Direction

Jul 10, 2017

Commentary: HOBBS – Former businessman and military veteran Steve Pearce announced today that he is a candidate for governor in 2018.

“I’m running for governor to change the direction of the state I love and call home. New Mexico has such great potential, but we need leadership to move the state forward. Too many people are struggling to find jobs and to many families are wrestling with poverty. Our kids are working their way through a broken education system.  Crime has taken over our streets. We can do better. We have to do better.”

Commentary: Following Steve Pearce’s announcement that he intends to run for governor, David Baake released the following statement:  “Traveling around our district, I have heard New Mexicans speak again and again about the need for new leadership.  Leaders who will work to protect our healthcare and defend the middle class.  Leaders who will celebrate New Mexico’s diversity and stand up to Donald Trump’s bigotry.  Leaders who understand that economic development and environmental protection must go hand-in-hand.  Pearce’s decision means the people of southern New Mexicans will have the op

Commentary: Since President Trump issued his Executive Order on April 26th, 2017, directing “the Department of the Interior to review prior monument designations and suggest legislative changes or modifications to the monument proclamations” there has been a broad local demonstration of support for keeping the Monument intact. Thousands of comment cards have been sent in to the Department of the Interior from Doña Ana County residents, and four local governments have passed resolutions opposing any changes to the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument. 

Four Corners Power Plant. Photo courtesy of EcoFlight and San Juan Citizens Alliance

  Commentary: On the same day the Environmental Protection Agency takes public comment on Administrator Scott Pruitt’s proposal to stay for 2 years the New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) to limit oil and gas methane pollution,

Commentary: It would be poetic justice that Congressman Steve Pearce spends some time in a nursing home. New Mexico has a dismal ranking of 49th in the indicator for “affordability and access to long-term services and supports,” based on the cost of nursing home care and long term care insurance.  Medicaid pays for most of New Mexico elderly people in nursing homes.


peter goodman

Commentary: It's July 4th.

My earliest memory of Independence Day was, of course, fireworks. High above the Croton River, unbelievably loud and magnificent, they exploded beautifully. Each 4th, my father wore a police uniform. A decorated U.S. Marine pilot during WWII, he was a volunteer auxiliary cop. He directed traffic to and from the fireworks.

Commentary: Camping is one of this nation’s great equalizers. Whether you camp with the latest, most expensive gear, or you hang a tarp and sleep in the bed of a pickup truck, there is a camping style to fit most every budget. It continues to be, for many families, one of the cheapest ways to vacation and enjoy the great outdoors. Camping is becoming an equalizer in a different way, as more and more racial and ethnic minorities are pitching tents.

New Mexico Democrats Announce Federal Review of Behavioral Health Access in New Mexico

Jul 8, 2017
Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham

Commentary: WASHINGTON – U.S. Sens. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, andU.S. Reps. Ben Ray Luján and Michelle Lujan Grisham announced that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) will review the level of access that New Mexicans have to behavioral health services provided through the Medicaid program.

Our Extraordinary Times

Jul 8, 2017

Commentary: Many people don’t realize it yet, but we are living in one of the most extraordinary times in human history. It may not seem that way during our weekly drudgery of going to work or school and our daily struggles to make financial ends meet. But if we pay attention, we’ll quickly notice signs all around us that something extraordinary and life changing is going on. Simply put, the fundamental structure of our very lives is being altered. Some of these changes can be seen as good, some as bad, and many of them as deeply transformative.

If West Virginia is “Dying,” then what is going on in New Mexico?

Jul 7, 2017

Commentary: The Rio Grande Foundation has often noted the historic similarities between New Mexico and West Virginia. So, a recent article in US News and World Report, the title of which was: “To Be Young in a Dying State” and containing an associated article: “West Virginia is Dying and Trump Can’t Save it.”

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos

  Commentary: WASHINGTON — Attorneys general of 18 states and the District of Columbia today filed suit against U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos over the delay of implementing student borrower defense regulations. This lawsuit, Commonwealth of Massachusetts v.

Why I'm Not A Democrat

Jul 5, 2017

Why I’m Not a Democrat

June 26, 2017 by

This post first appeared on

Editor's Note:

CHINA: USCIRF Condemns Ramadan Restrictions in Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region

Jul 5, 2017
Vice Chair Sandra Jolley speaks out in support of Religious Prisoner of Conscience, Gulmira Imin.

Commentary– Muslims around the world recently marked the end of the holy month of Ramadan.  The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) strongly condemns the Chinese government’s restrictions on Uighur Muslims’ religious practice during Ramadan in the autonomous region of Xinjiang.

Lily Eskelsen García-President, NEA / NEA photo

Commentary: So… I promised short speeches, so let’s get right to it. 

The world has changed since last we met. I think our last RA was 413 years ago. Doesn’t it seem like a lifetime has gone by in the last few months?

And we’ve got a lot to talk about.