GOP guv candidates discuss issues in Las Cruces


  1. Astute Observer says:

    Good run down on the pitches Heath. I like facts and logic … As for Garcia … huh? where are the facts and logic? exempt employees account for $250 million of the budget? Half a million each for 500 of them? Try again, but also try thinking …. Actually – the right place for that number is the 4000 funded, and vacant positions that aren’t appointees and are still on the books … where does THAT money go? The appointee ranks have exploded under this administration – Denish is part of that problem and there is no way around that – my guess is that the commenters so far would agree with that. EVERY Republican candidate has expressed a view on this, from Arnold-Jones to Weh – Turner is in the middle of that grouping, and each of them has slammed it. That said – there is a place and a purpose for an appointee loyal to the Governor – the key is to keep that list to a minimum, and place them where they have experience and value … for example, the governor appointed a person to be an assisant to a cabinet secretary, but the cabinet secretary won’t let him into the office … and do we need, as Denish has proposed, a water liaison to keep the governor informed on water issues? Another one? I thought that was the state engineer … an appointee, by the way.
    While one of Turners attributes is that he is young and has no experience in state government – I’m not sure this is the time for on-the-job training. He often invokes the beloved memory of Gary Johnson – who did some good things, but backed himself into a corner and his only option was to veto things – while he prevented some things … he didn’t DO much. Due to to his inexperience, and the inexperienced crowd he brought in with him – an insider to the Johnson administration has referred to the first two years as a high scale version of ‘romper room’ .

  2. ched macquigg says:

    I’m sure that it will be great consolation to a good employee who Turner fires, for no reason except impress voters like
    you, knowing that Turner will replace them with someone as competent or honest. I don’t know how you can promise “they can always make their case”, when Turner has said quite plainly that he has no such intention. Do you have that much juice in his new administration?

    To my knowledge I don’t know any appointees at all, so I am not trying to protect any individual, but rather a principle of fair treatment for everyone.

    I don’t see that the issue is one or the other; Denish keeping the incompetent and corrupt, or Turner firing them along with all the good ones. There is a third possibility and that is firing the bad ones and keeping the good and experienced ones.

  3. smallg says:

    As sure as I am that Turner will request the resignations of all state government appointees, I’m sure he will conduct a search for a staff that he appoints to ensure the implementation of his policies. If any of ‘ched macquigg’ friends, relatives or associates are appointees they can always make their case. Ched, stop worrying about them being blackballed from state government unless of course they deserve such treatment, and in that case you can always vote for Diane Denish. That is the issue isn’t it. Does she keep them or does Turner let them go.

  4. ched macquigg says:

    Forgive me; one last. You say no other candidate has pledged to “do something” about the appointees. JAJ has indeed, pledged to fire all the worthless ones.

  5. ched macquigg says:


    You are going to have to quote a source on your figures. As far as I can tell, there are about 450 exempts all together, and I know they’re not making a $500K a year, so no way do they pull down $250M between them. I question your facts and accuracy.

    I would also ask you to quote any source at all that maintains that they are “all” “glorified paper pushers”. Some exempt positions are absolutely necessary, a fact that is not changed by the fact that many of the positions were invented by the Democrats (Richardson) to reward party loyalists.If there were only one who was not, s/he deserves to be judged on there record and not fired simply to promote a political housekeeping agenda.

    No one in their right mind would accuse JAJ of being part of the “establishment” or a “party insider”, Nor can she be reasonably accused of bending to their will. As far as having real solutions; I challenge you to point to a single solution she has offered that is not “real” and likely to solve New Mexicans everyday problems.

  6. garciam2007r says:

    Ched – Turner is the only candidate that is pledging to to do something about these political appointees, who are essentially glorified paper pushers. These people cost us New Mexicans $250 million a year- that, if I am not mistaken, is HALF of our deficit. Almost eight years ago our government ran perfectly fine with 167 political appointees, now we have succumbed to debt and are struggling to get out.

    Regarding your comment on Turner and his political experience, I am excited to see a candidate that is not part of the establishment and is not a party insider. We don’t need more of the same in Santa Fe, we need a leader who will not bend for the party insiders and someone who will bring forth real solutions for the problems New Mexicans face everyday.

  7. politicalguy says:

    Doug’s an earnest young man with lots of enthusiasm. Great. But that’s not enough. Susana’s a prosecutor of street thugs, but that’s not the governor’s job, so I wonder why she’s not running for re-election as DA in Dona Ana county? Pete? well, at least he showed up, but one wonders why, at this point.

    Only Janice Arnold-Jones showed vision here, and it’s evident even in this article. Her grasp of the issues is far deeper and greater than the others. Her knowledge of the issues – that illegal immigration must be controlled at the border through technology (and that our border patrol is poorly equipped with outdated technology) – outstrips all the others.

    Those who hear her know this. More should be listening.

  8. stever says:

    Pete, Jr. doesn’t loom like someone running for the republican nomination for govenor. Sure it shouldn’t matter and absolutely, it does.

  9. ched macquigg says:

    Turner said; he would “get rid of every single political appointee that this governor has created.”

    He has made this pledge over and over. Unless one believes that every single appointee is either incompetent or corrupt, this is a promise to fire even those who are honest, diligent and hardworking public servants, for no other reason than that they were appointed by Bill Richardson.

    How can he possibly justify such unjust solution? Janice Arnold-Jones’ focus on competence and conduct as qualifications for public service, rather than on political allegiance, makes a whole lot more sense.

    Corrupt as it is, Richardson’s administration may well include at least one person who was appointed for reasons other than a political pay off. Every one of them deserves individual consideration. If they are doing a good job, why fire them.

    Turner touts the fact that he has no political experience. This is an example where that hurts more than it helps.