After Ordering Irresponsible Cuts to New Mexico Programs, Gov. Martinez Leaves State

Ineffective Lieutenant Governor John Sanchez in charge, but refuses to do anything (literally does nothing)

New Mexico – After ordering irresponsible cuts to New Mexico programs, Governor Martinez attends political meetings in Texas leaving New Mexico in ineffective Lieutenant Governor John Sanchez’s hands. As acting governor while Governor Martinez is in Texas, Lieutenant Governor John Sanchez could heed New Mexico Senate Democrats call for a special session to address the more than $600 million budget shortfall for FY2016 and FY2017.

“Governor Martinez refused to prioritize New Mexico families in her cuts yesterday, and today she’s not in the state to answer for her actions. Instead she has left the state in the hands of Lieutenant Governor John Sanchez, who has done little to nothing for New Mexico and doesn’t take a stand against Governor Martinez’s failed economic agenda,” said Joe Kabourek, Executive Director of the Democratic Party of New Mexico. “Both Governor Martinez and Lieutenant Governor John Sanchez are avoiding the real problem: they continue to keep the cash rolling for corporate donors instead of investing in New Mexico’s economy.”

Yesterday, Governor Martinez announced a directive for all state agencies to cut 5%, without prioritizing investments to grow New Mexico’s economy, and today the Albuquerque Journal reported that she is attending political meetings in Dallas, Texas—in effect washing her hands of the damage her economic agenda caused to the state’s economy to build her national profile.

New Mexico is facing one of its largest budget shortfalls since the great recession with a total deficit of nearly $200 million in FY2016 and an estimated shortfall of more than $600 million for FY201 and FY2017. Under Republican leadership the state suffers from anemic economic growth and an unemployment rate that is well above the national average at 6.2%.

Senate Democrats proactively called for a special session earlier this month. Governor Martinez refused to address her failed economic policies, while the state’s economic outlook continues to worsen.