Governor Richardson has officially been named by Barack Obama to head the Department of Commerce. While I’m sure he would have preferred the State Department (and the Commerce Department has no constitutional function and should be eliminated) this country faces too many economic problems not to give Richardson our best wishes for helping the Obama Administration solve the current economic situation.
As I said in a recent article in the Santa Fe New Mexican, Richardson’s record on the New Mexico economy is mixed:
On one hand, he cut income and capital gains taxes to very positive effect.” “In that sense, he will undoubtedly be a voice of reason in the Obama administration. On the other hand, he has relied heavily on targeted tax breaks designed to benefit specific companies. His prized achievements are arguably the film industry and Eclipse Aviation.
The Governor’s Office has said that since he was elected, more than 100 major film and television projects have been shot in the state, adding more than $2 billion to the state’s economy.
But Eclipse, in which the state has a $19 million equity investment, has been hit with some major financial problems in the past months, including not being able to make payroll at one point last week.
Hopefully, Richardson will be an advocate for responsible tax policies in the Obama Administration. Only time will tell, but at this point we can only wish the Governor the best in Washington.