Lujan Grisham tells Trump on conference call that states need more help

On a conference call with governors, including New Mexico’s Michelle Lujan Grisham, President Donald Trump said states will be on their own when it comes to medical equipment like respirators and ventilators, according to a report by the New York Times. The equipment will be necessary when serious cases of COVID-19, a type of coronavirus, grow. 

From the New York Times report:

“Respirators, ventilators, all of the equipment — try getting it yourselves,” Mr. Trump told the governors during the conference call, a recording of which was shared with The New York Times.“We will be backing you, but try getting it yourselves. Point of sales, much better, much more direct if you can get it yourself.”

The Times quoted Lujan Grisham as saying on the call, “If one state doesn’t get the resources and materials they need, the entire nation continues to be at risk.” After the conference call, Lujan Grisham requested a call from Vice President Mike Pence, who is the administration’s point person on the coronavirus response. 

Lujan Grisham’s office says Pence called her and that he committed to helping the state get the materials needed to help with the response. Before the call with Pence, the governor’s Director of Communications Tripp Stelnicki said in an email that the state was trying to leverage the help of private partners, mentioning attempts to purchase a new machine to expand the state’s testing capacity. 

However, the office says the governor also feels the federal government isn’t helping create a nationwide system to aid all states, and that states should not be competitive with each other.

U.S. Senate votes to acquit Trump

The U.S. Senate voted to acquit President Donald Trump on two articles of impeachment Wednesday. On Article I, abuse of power, Utah Republican Sen. Mitt Romney voted along with all Democrats, making the vote 52-48. Article II, obstruction of Congress, came on party-lines, 53-47. 

The allegations came in light of Trump asking Ukraine to announce an investigation of the son of former Vice President Joe Biden, a Democratic candidate for president who Trump may face in November’s general election, and the trouble Congress had getting information from the White House, which stonewalled the investigation. It would have taken two-thirds of the Senate to vote to convict Trump and remove him from office. Both New Mexico U.S. Senators voted to convict Trump and criticized the Senate Majority for not calling any witnesses for the trial, including former National Security Advisor John Bolton.

White House task force on murdered and missing Indigenous crisis meets with local criticism

The Department of Justice held its first task force meeting on murdered and missing American Indians and Alaska Natives with much fanfare Wednesday in Washington, D.C., but local leaders question whether the federal government’s efforts will be enough. President Donald Trump issued an executive order late last year establishing what he called “Operation Lady Justice,” an interagency group led by the U.S. Department of Justice, that would “aggressively” address the crisis of murdered and missing women and girls in Indigenous communities. Although no one knows for sure how many Indigenous women and children are murdered or go missing, the federal government estimates that 1.5 million Indigenous women and children experience violence, including sexual violence, in their lifetime. Just prior to Trump’s announcement, Secretary of the Interior William Barr told a group at the Flathead Reservation in Montana last year that the Department of Justice would commit $1.5 million to hire specialized coordinators to help improve law enforcement response to the problem. But Democratic U.S. Rep. Deb Haaland,an enrolled member of Laguna Pueblo, has previously said that the DOJ’s plan “falls short,” issued a critical statement to NM Political Report Thursday.

In historic vote, House impeaches Trump for abuse of power, obstruction of Congress

The U.S. House voted to approve two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump Wednesday night. 

The House voted 230-197, with one voting present, on the first article of impeachment, abuse of power. That alleged that Trump used his powers as President to try to punish Joe Biden, a political opponent. The House voted 229-198, with one voting present, on the second article of impeachment, obstruction of Congress. That article alleged that Trump improperly impeded the investigation in a number of ways, including directing current and former officials to not comply with subpoenas from House committees. It’s just the third time in U.S. history that a president has been impeached, after Andrew Johnson in 1868 and Bill Clinton in 1998.

Torres Small: Impeachment ‘the necessary response’ to Trump’s actions

U.S. Rep. Xochitl Torres Small announced this weekend that she will vote to approve articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump. The House is expected to vote on two articles of impeachment against Trump this week. The freshman Democrat said in a statement that she believes “impeachment is the necessary response to President Trump’s use of the Executive Office of the President for his own personal and political gain.”

Torres Small won election in a very narrow race in a conservative district that Trump won in 2016. Torres Small was one of the moderate and conservative Democrats who won congressional elections in 2018 as part of a Democratic wave. The articles of impeachment approved by the House Judiciary Committee last week charge Trump with abuse of power for his conduct in asking Ukraine to help his political campaign by investigating Joe Biden’s son.

Pelosi announces House will move forward with articles of impeachment

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced Thursday that the U.S. House of Representatives would start drafting articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump over his withholding of foreign aid to Ukraine in exchange for investigating the son of a political rival. The announcement came after an investigation by the House, which began in late September. At the end of October, all three of New Mexico’s members of the House, all Democrats, voted to support the impeachment inquiry. The investigations included closed door meetings by House committees and more recently public hearings of the House Intelligence Committee and the House Judiciary Committee. Ben Ray Luján, the Assistant Speaker in the U.S. House of Representatives, supported the announcement.

How McKinsey helped the Trump administration detain and deport immigrants

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for The Big Story newsletter to receive stories like this one in your inbox. Just days after he took office in 2017, President Donald Trump set out to make good on his campaign pledge to halt illegal immigration. In a pair of executive orders, he ordered “all legally available resources” to be shifted to border detention facilities and called for hiring 10,000 new immigration officers. The logistical challenges were daunting, but as luck would have it, Immigration and Customs Enforcement already had a partner on its payroll: McKinsey & Company, an international consulting firm brought on under the Obama administration to help engineer an “organizational transformation” in the ICE division charged with deporting migrants who are in the United States unlawfully.

The Trump administration cracked down on Medicaid. Kids lost insurance.

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for The Big Story newsletter to receive stories like this one in your inbox. In early August, Elizabeth Petersen was home-schooling her children in the kitchen of their northern Idaho home when she got a call from Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center, where her 4-year-old son, Paul, was set to have surgery a few weeks later. Since having a stroke around his first birthday, Paul had been under treatment to restore use of the right side of his body. He had recently graduated from a feeding tube and needed surgery to close a hole in his stomach.

Members of NM House delegation vote to back impeachment investigation

House Democrats, including all members of New Mexico’s delegation, voted Thursday to approve rules related to the impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump. The 232-196 vote was nearly on party lines, with ex-Republican, now independent Justin Amash voting along with the Democratic majority and two Democrats voting with Republicans against the rules. The vote outlined rules for the next phase of the impeachment proceedings, which has so far consisted of closed-door meetings with witnesses. At the same time, the House has been pushing for documents from Trump and testimony from those close to Trump. Republicans have criticized the process, saying it is not transparent.

Poll: Latinx, Hispanic voters in NM sour on Trump

A tracking poll of Latinx and Hispanic voters showed weakened support for Donald Trump in New Mexico and other potential battleground states. The poll, conducted by Equis Research between Sept. 23 and 29, found support among the voters in New Mexico fell from 28 percent in July to 24 percent in the most recent poll. Both numbers are still the highest in the eleven states surveyed. Job approval among Latinx and Hispanic voters in New Mexico also dropped, from 35 percent to 29 percent.