The state’s top elected official and top attorney are on opposite sides of a key immigration case in front of the United States Supreme Court. At issue is an executive order by President Barack Obama called Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents, or DAPA. The order would allow some 4 million immigrants to not only live without fear of deportation, but would provide a framework for a pathway to legal status. The order would only apply to those who have been in the United States for at least five years, have a clean criminal record and have a child that lives in the country legally. Those opposing the legislation say it is an overbroad order that should have gone through the legislative branch, that is Congress, first.
—All of New Mexico’s congressional Democrats are on Team Hillary. Ben Ray Luján, the last holdout, announced his support for Hillary Clinton. Luján said in a statement that the former Secretary of State “embodies New Mexico values.”
“She puts people first and will roll up her sleeves to change their lives for the better,” he added. “Her record of advocating on behalf of women, children and families, investing in science and supporting our national labs, and fighting to protect our land, water and air will make a real difference in New Mexico and across the country.”
Luján is also the chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, giving him an increased national profile among Democrats. —Speaking of endorsements, you may have heard that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie endorsed Donald Trump (yes, each word is a link to a different news story on the event).
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker hasn’t officially joined the Republican presidential nomination scrum yet, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t campaigning. The Wisconsin governor who gained a national profile through a fight with unions in Wisconsin, and a consequent recall election which his governorship survived, has been traveling around the country shoring up support for a likely presidential run. And while he travels, he mentions a few Republican governors. One is New Mexico governor Susana Martinez, the first Latina governor in the United States. While in Atlanta, when speaking to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
“I think that argument’s even truer now,” he said.
With a resurgence of measles in a number of states there are heightened concerns over the increase in unvaccinated children. Some politicians have found themselves involved in the controversy by backing a discredited idea that vaccinations cause autism. Senator Rand Paul, R-Ky., and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie have each walked back statements on the issue this week. New Mexico’s congressional delegation each backed immunization of children in statements to New Mexico Political Report. “When it comes to public health, I follow science and the recommendation of the Centers for Disease Control.
While New Mexico has so far been spared from the latest outbreak of measles, the increasing number of local schoolchildren who haven’t been vaccinated is cause for concern as the highly contagious disease afflicts surrounding states. The Santa Fe New Mexican last week cited figures from the Department of Health showing a 17 percent increase since 2012 in the number of vaccine exemptions requested by parents. From the article:
New Mexico law allows parents to request vaccination exemptions for their children based on medical need or religious beliefs. The exemptions registered with the Department of Health cover all vaccines, not specifically measles. But the recent measles outbreak is reason to raise awareness, said state Health Secretary Retta Ward.