You know who your friends are when times get tough. If that old aphorism holds true, then New Mexico taxpayers — and anyone else concerned about good government — should thank their Senator today. That is, if they have been aligned with the vast majority of their Senate colleagues on several recent votes.
In recent days, the Senate has passed two “veto overrides” of Governor Richardson. The first dispute was over the Administration’s refusal to share certain information about the Medicaid program and its managed care vendors with the Legislative Finance Committee. This dispute has been ongoing for more than a year and the bill mandated such disclosure.
The Governor’s veto of a bill which passed unanimously by the Legislature and was endorsed by Attorney General Gary King, was overridden by a vote of 34-8 in the Senate. The override will not be complete until the House also votes by a 2/3 majority to also override the Governor’s veto which would require 47 of the 70 members.
The Senate overrode Richardson and his mismanagement of the State Investment Council by a vote of 33-4.
Both of these issues are bi-partisan and relate to good-government. Hopefully the House will show its willingness to stand up for taxpayers regardless of any pressure the Governor may bring to bear. Now, on to that minor issue of the budget…