“It’s no secret that I have always believed that law-abiding citizens should be able to own firearms for both sport and self-defense,” said Heinrich, who won election to the U.S. Senate in November and will be sworn into the upper chamber next month. “Like many law-abiding New Mexicans, I own guns for those very purposes. But I don’t need a 25-round clip for effective home defense, and I sure don’t need one for hunting. That’s just too much killing power. It defies common sense.”Meanwhile, Michelle Lujan Grisham wants an immediate reinstatement of the assault weapons ban.
Sen. Tom Udall has opposed the assault weapons ban in the past but is now open to hearing about the change.
Rep. Ben Ray Lujan was closer to Heirnich and says there needs to be an examination.
Rep. Steve Pearce, the only Republican in New Mexico's delegation, says that new laws won't change anything when it comes to shootings.
On to the Word:
- The Weekly Word podcast had our year-end awards show, the Patron Awards. You can listen here.
- Despite the horrific shooting in Connecticut, gun control laws likely will not fare well in the New Mexico legislature in the upcoming 60-day session.
- The Albuquerque Journal says that Gov. Susana Martinez supports laws that would track mentally ill and make sure guns don't end up in their hands.
Martinez did not address calls after the Newtown shooting to restrict access to assault weapons, such as the kind used in the Connecticut school shooting.
- Great news as Rep. Bob Wooley, R-Roswell, is cancer-free according to Milan Simonich.
- New Mexico's five electors officially cast their votes for Barack Obama the Santa Fe Reporter reported.
Elizabeth “Lisa” Chavez, Katherine “Kat” Duran, Tracy Canard Goodluck, Pamelya Herndon and David Thomson represented New Mexico today in the Electoral College. The State Central Committee of the New Mexico Democratic Party elected them earlier this year.
The Republican, Constitution, Libertarian, New Mexico Independent and Green Parties of New Mexico each also selected five electors for service in the Electoral College, in case their candidate won the most votes in the state during this year's presidential election.
- The Questa school board will remain suspended.
According to a decision and order released Monday evening (Dec. 17), the suspension will continue until new board members are "installed and sworn in" following the Feb. 5 election. The board was suspended in September, with a suspension letter from Skandera accusing several board members of harassment, micromanaging and otherwise hindering the educational process of the Questa school district.
- Sandoval County Clerk Sally Padilla has been criticized by many for the long election-day lines in Rio Rancho.
Padilla accused them of “beating a dead horse” and defended the work of her staff, saying they are trained and knowledgeable and did a good job in the November general election.Padilla is the outgoing county clerk.
“I am tired of people pointing fingers. I am tired of defending myself,” Padilla said during Thursday night’s Sandoval County Commission meeting. “If anyone is dissatisfied, don’t blame staff or the clerk’s office.”
- KUNM reports on how tribal leaders are worried about the future of Medicaid and whether Gov. Susana Martinez will agree to the expansion of the program in the state. -- largely because many Native Americans depend on it for health care.
- The Santa Fe New Mexican looks at some potential changes to the Santa Fe municipal election code.
The City Council adopted a resolution in April calling for a charter review and encouraging consideration of issues including whether term limits should be imposed on the eight city councilors, half of whom are elected every two years to four-year terms. The city also elects a mayor every four years. Under one proposed change to the charter, a councilor elected in a nonmayoral election would have to resign his or her seat on the governing body if that councilor decides to run for mayor halfway through a council term.
- An interesting look from the Los Alamos Monitor on how weather-related closings are decided.
According to officials involved in determining how and when things get canceled or postponed due to adverse weather conditions, there’s a lot of coordination and timing involved. Just ask Patricia Wolff, spokesperson for the New Mexico Department of Transportation.
- The Investments & Pensions Oversight Committee meets today in Santa Fe at the Roundhouse.
The Legislative Education Study Committee begins a three-day meeting today also in Santa Fe at the Roundhouse. These are the last scheduled meetings until the Legislative Finance Committee meets just before the session.
- Los Alamos and its employees will donate $3.1 million to non-profits.
- Despite increased calls for gun control laws, there have not been increased gun sales in Las Cruces since the Connecticut shooting for most stores. The Las Cruces Sun-News has the report.
- There was a threat at Ruidoso Middle School on Friday according to the Ruidoso News.
"We've identified a student who admittedly made some remarks about causing some violence at the school," said Ruidoso Police Lt. Ray Merritt. "During an interview with him and some other witnesses it turns out that he said that he never planned on executing what he told his friends he was going to do, his plan."
Merritt said the case appeared to involve "a misplaced comment."
- Gas wars in Mesilla, New Mexico resulted in $2.29 per gallon gas at one gas station.
- The Deming Headlight reported on school and police reaction to the Newtown, CT shooting.
- Santa Fe addressed the shootings as well.
The school district, city, and county sent out a joint letter (in both English and Spanish) to parents Monday expressing condolences to those affected by the tragedy and to emphasize that every school in the district is looking out for the safety of students.
- Could Albuquerque be seeing a white Christmas? The Albuquerque Journal's John Fleck and KRQE's Mark Ronchetti have stepped forward to take blame for the jinx when it doesn't happen.
- Albuquerque city councilors decided not to name a community center after the late Johnny Tapia. KOB:
Critics pointed to Tapia's drug addiction and legal troubles as reasons why the proposal shouldn't go through.