Democratic AG and Auditor Defend New Mexico Against Martinez Administration Egregious Abuse of Power

Tax and Revenue Secretary Demesia Padilla Resigns 

New Mexico – Today, the Democratic Party of New Mexico released the following statement after Governor Martinez-appointed Taxation and Revenue Department (TRD) Secretary Demesia Padilla resigned from her position for an egregious abuse of power not unfamiliar to the Martinez administration. The resignation comes after New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas and New Mexico State Auditor Tim Keller conducted investigations into Secretary Padilla’s conduct giving preferential treatment to a client, which resulted in lost revenue for the state.

“This resignation is a signal that Secretary Padilla participated in egregious misconduct that the Martinez administration is known for. This abuse of power cost the state money at a time when we are facing serious budget shortfalls, and I commend Auditor Keller and AG Balderas for doing their due diligence to investigate and ensure New Mexico isn’t cheated out of revenues in the future,” said Debra Haaland Chairwoman of the Democratic Party of New Mexico.

More than a year ago, Chairwoman Debra Haaland called for the Secretary’s resignation when it was revealed that Secretary Demesia Padilla used her official position to pressure TRD employees to give a sweetheart deal to a taxpayer, and planned to protect herself from the mistakes she made in her previous work as an accountant. Governor Martinez, on the other hand, did not call for Padilla’s resignation and instead allowed Padilla to continue in the TRD Secretary post.

This latest resignation comes in a long line of mismanagement and misconduct stemming from the Martinez Administration, including an investigation into the Human Services Department for tampering with food assistance applications, news about mismanagement of rape kit backlogs in the state, and Governor Martinez’s late night call to State Police after a staff holiday party.