Of Democrats and “economic development.”

Politics get pretty funny sometimes. I just blogged a few days ago in response to a Republican who advocates the use of government incentives and breaks as a tool for development. Then, Javier Gonzales, the seemingly clueless Chairman of the Democratic Party of New Mexico, writes this column in which he advocates for those very same incentives as the Republican author would likely advocate.

More amazing still is the fact that his party’s previous Governor built his economic development legacy on, what else but tax cuts! Read articles here, here, and here (none of which are mine) praising the legacy of Richardson’s tax cuts here in New Mexico.

Is the left hand (of the Democratic Party) unaware of what the right hand is/was doing or his he just desperate to score political points against Gov. Martinez? How many Democrats would have gone along with proven economic growth tools like eliminating the personal income tax or enacting Right to Work legislation? My answer is zero, but I’d LOVE to see one step up on those issues.

Lastly, Gonzalez is just flat out wrong when he takes Martinez to task on the unemployment rate in New Mexico. He claims that “unemployment is stuck in the 9 percent range.” I like using round numbers as much as the next person, but New Mexico’s unemployment rate recently dropped from 8.7 to 8.1 percent. That’s closer to 8 percent for you math majors out there. Also, New Mexico’s rate, while not spectacular, is well below the federal rate.

New Mexico needs to do better to generate economic growth (which will result in the employment of more workers), but Martinez is not a dictator. Democrats have to step up and support job creation efforts that work.