Would you vote for the creation of an Independent Ethics Commission to provide oversight of the executive and legislative branches of government in New Mexico? With recent violations committed by those in power in state government, oversight and transparency is sorely needed, and an independent entity would serve such a purpose. But I’d also like to know who will serve on such a commission, how they’re selected, and whether it will be partisan or not.
What measures would you take to make New Mexico state government transparent, accessible and accountable to the public? Overturn Citizens United and disallow endless amounts of dark money into the political system. How can we have one campaign finance reporting system with regulations and transparency while simultaneously allowing unlimited, non-transparent PACs? Elected officials are accountable to their constituents, yet many don’t provide access to information in their communities.
Would you give permission to the Legislative Council Service to make publicly available the final amounts you personally allocate to various capital outlay projects? Yes. Legislators are supposed to be accountable to their electorate, and voters cannot make informed decisions about who is or is not representing their interests when officials are not required to be transparent about where they allocate these funds.
If you think reform of the capital outlay system is needed, how would you reform it? If you don't think reform is needed, give us your reasons. It’s hard to say how much reform is needed because the transparency issue is so glaring. Capital outlay spending should be public and legislators should be required to reveal their spending, demonstrating how the money is being spent, and keeping that process fair and transparent.
Does New Mexico need to invest more in early childhood development? If you think it does, in your opinion what is the best way to invest? If you don't think New Mexico needs to invest more, tell us why. I strongly believe that New Mexico needs to invest more in early childhood development, as education is one of the most effective combatants against poverty, which continues to plague New Mexico and its children. I would work to increase funding for teacher training and salaries and put more resources into early childhood facilities.
What measures would you take to improve the state's long-term economy? We need to increase the minimum wage, protect workers, and keep our kids and businesses in New Mexico. We should also lead the United States in solar and alternative energy technology, moving away from oil and coal, thus expanding our economy for all New Mexicans and broadening the state’s revenue.
Would you support the legalization of cannabis for adult recreational use in New Mexico? Why or why not? Yes. Around 700,000 people were arrested and jailed for cannabis use last year. This is unacceptable. Of those arrests, a disproportionate number of those were minorities. This policy hurts families. Cannabis use should be legal and regulated like alcohol.