August 10, 2016

Wilson Beffort resigns from Senate


New Mexico State Senate.

State Senator Sue Wilson Beffort resigned, opening up a seat for the governor to appoint—for the next three months at least.

Former State Sen. Sue Wilson Beffort, R-Sandia Park.

Former State Sen. Sue Wilson Beffort, R-Sandia Park.

The Republican from Sandia Park is not running for reelection, so anyone who is appointed would only serve through the start of the year.

The Mountain View Telegraph reported the news that the Bernalillo County Commission is accepting applications from those who want to be considered by Gov. Susana Martinez for the appointment.

The paper reported Wilson Beffort tendered her resignation July 29.

Republican former state representative James P. White will face Sandia Park Democrat Harold W. Murphree in November’s election in the Republican-leaning district.

Since Wilson Beffort’s district contains parts multiple counties, each county commission with area in the district will put forward a candidate. Martinez will then choose from those names a replacement.

In addition to Bernalillo County, Sandoval, Santa Fe and Torrance county commissions will all get to put forward a candidate. While the Bernalillo, Sandoval and Santa Fe commissions all have a majority of Democrats, the Torrance county commission is made up of three Republicans.

Martinez, a Republican, has chosen Republicans to fill empty legislative spots when given the chance in the past.

Wilson Beffort is the second legislator who is not running to leave before their term is up. Former Speaker of the House Ken Martinez made a similar move because of his new job, as Bernalillo County Attorney.

Ken Martinez is a Democrat.

The appointees by Susana Martinez could actually cast important votes, as a special session becomes more and more likely because of the bad budget situation in the state.