Our County Platform – A New Day For New Mexico
Preserve the rights of state/local governments to establish laws, regulations, moratoriums, etc. to protect their citizens from environmental hazards by requiring more stringent controls and specifications than those established by higher levels of government. 11
Democrats believe we must fight to preserve the essence of the longest standing democracy in the world: a government that represents the American people, not just a handful of politically influential special interests. 28
Democratic Party of Santa Fe County
Platform & Resolutions Committee
2018 County Platform
Working Draft V5
Every American has the right to a job that earns enough to provide adequate food, housing, clothing, healthcare, recreation, and protection from the economic fears of old age, illness, or accidents, while ensuring adequate resources for future generations to provide equally for themselves. Businesses have the right to operate free from unfair competition and domination. We must support small businesses that promote, reflect, protect, and embrace democratic values. We must establish a county-wide minimum wage of $15 an hour over the next several years, or a living wage, whichever is higher, to ensure that no full-time worker lives in poverty. We support a progressive tax system where all businesses and individuals pay their fair share. We will continue to ensure that women, people of color, and other marginalized communities are treated with dignity in the workplace free of discrimination, including but not limited to pay equity and time off to care for family without fear of losing a job.
- We value the partnership with government institutions and support means to increase direct hiring in education and research, public safety, national laboratories, local governments, land management, and tribal gaming. We support investing in small businesses, women-owned businesses, and minority-owned businesses and hiring locally.
- We value the Healthcare sector and recognize when Medicaid is protected and expanded, all healthcare jobs are protected and expanded.
- We value the Renewable Energy sector and support all efforts to promote and expand it, including training for new jobs in the sector and support for start-ups and existing small businesses.
- We value the Hospitality sector and will:
- Expand the tourism industry to build New Mexico’s brand.
- Attract tourists from around the world by building New Mexico’s brand as the best place to go for enchantment, adventure, open spaces, chile, margaritas, and legal cannabis products.
- Keep our dollars at home with buy-local campaigns. New Mexico businesses should have the first shot and the best shot at every contract with our large-scale public institutions; keep New Mexico tax dollars in New Mexico by contracting locally.
- We value the Food Service industry and believe we should foster growth in the industry to assist in higher tips and wages for these workers by reforming industry regulations to increase minimum wages, modernize liquor license quotas, and streamline the process to open new restaurants and bars.
- We support direct job creation through investments in infrastructure and transportation projects and renewable energy projects.
- We support a strong safety net of services for New Mexicans living in poverty, including child-care, food and nutrition support, affordable housing, free school breakfasts and lunches, job training and retraining, and comprehensive high-quality health services.
- We support partnerships with small businesses that:
- Promote and guarantee low-interest small business loans and start-up grants to provide the seed capital to launch and expand job-creating businesses;
- Establish small business incubators to teach people with good ideas how to turn them into businesses;
- Support legislation that offers incentives for investing in technologies developed by New Mexicans;
- Implement tax policies that increase equity, including a fair self-employment tax rate and the elimination of tax loopholes that allow out-of-state corporations to benefit from preferences intended for small local businesses;
- We support workforce education programs in all regions of the state including investments in vocational education and training programs for all individuals interested in entering skilled trades, technical, and other hands-on careers.
- We support developing the market for authentic New Mexico branded chile and an environmentally friendly agricultural sector.
- We support the jobs, products, and revenues from a legal industrialized hemp industry supported by a fully unionized work force.
- New Mexico will embrace the opportunity to be a world leader in the renewable energy revolution and the substantial growth potential by requiring utilities to include renewables in new generating facilities, increasing our Renewable Portfolio Standards, and reinstating the New Mexico solar energy tax credit while supporting an online energy trading market.
- We support creating an international economy by opening our markets with Mexico through direct flights, global promotion programs, and exports of energy technology services and aerospace.
- We support all efforts to promote economic growth in the technology sector through education, the development and promotion of advanced tech applications, and generating innovators by teaching coding in every public school.
- We support legalizing cannabis for adult recreational use, supported by a fully unionized workforce and contributing to a diversified tax base.
- We support stabilizing the state budget through diversified revenue streams that hedge against market volatility in the oil and gas sector.
- We encourage the state to enact public banking as a way to increase public budget revenues without increasing taxes.
- We support strong oversight and regulation of big banks and other financial institutions.
- We oppose predatory interest rates that trap people in a cycle of debt and support government microloan and assistance programs that meet the needs of high-risk borrowers fairly and transparently.
- We support programs that remove barriers and create a path to a job for persons experiencing chronic unemployment including: veterans, technologically displaced people, people experiencing long-term homelessness, persons living with disabilities, and disconnected youth, including victims of human trafficking.
- We support efforts to give all New Mexicans access to jobs that provide them with a living wage that provides for a home, health care, education, leisure, and retirement.
- We oppose privatization of essential government services and outsourcing of public sector jobs.
- We support the development and purchase of goods made in America, and support modifying the US tax code so that corporations have incentives to hire U.S. workers.
- We support state and federal regulations to prevent monopolies that limit our choices and increase our costs, including media mergers.
Democrats will make it easier for workers, public and private, to exercise their right to organize and join unions. We recognize how unions have contributed to building a stronger middle class, as well as their critical role in fighting for living wages, fair work rules and hiring practices, and safe working conditions.
We support a range of actions to advance this overall goal, including:
- Reaffirming our support for the rights of workers to organize and to bargain collectively for a safe and fair working environment.
- Supporting fair labor practices.
- Hiring local union shops and businesses that uphold the rights and dignity of workers.
- Exposing and opposing “right-to-work” laws, which are anti-union and limit the rights and benefits of workers.
- Eliminating unfair hiring and firing practices.
- We support retirement plans for all.
- Increasing the minimum wage to $15/hour over the next several years to support a living wage for New Mexicans.
- Supporting equal pay for equal work.
- Opposing the outsourcing of American jobs.
- Enacting free trade agreements or revising existing ones to allow American businesses to compete in a global market without exploiting workers and the environment, including provisions to address unequal wages, unequal labor protections, and unequal environmental standards.
Democrats believe everyone has a basic right to be free from coercion and violence in their private and public lives, including freedom from physical and sexual abuse in whatever context it occurs and to whatever person, regardless of gender, age, disability, or race. We support all efforts to hold institutions to account for looking the other way when people in power use their positions to abuse others. For most of human history, abused persons have been silenced while abusers go free. We are committed to doing everything possible to reverse this situation.
We will support candidates who understand the dynamics of abuse and pledge to work toward:
- Appropriate responses from law enforcement agencies, including giving credence to persons reporting abuse (always believe the victim and act on that belief rather than vice versa); collecting, analyzing, and retaining valid evidence of abuse; establishing circumstances of privacy for interviews; offering measures to increase the safety of abused persons; and cooperating with advocacy organizations representing abused persons.
- Analysis of all outstanding rape kits (these are evidence collection kits that hospitals use in rape cases; with 5,000+ kits unanalyzed as of late 2016—the worst rate per population in the nation).
- Parallel measures to those described for law enforcement, for all civilian offices entrusted with taking reports and acting on them, including but not limited to supervisors and human resources departments in businesses and nonprofits, deans on campuses and principals in public schools, and authorities in church
- Appropriate actions by prosecuting attorneys, most especially following through with the large majorityof cases that do not fit common stereotypes of what a “real” rape/child abuse/battering/elder abuse situation looks like. Only in this way can these stereotypes be changed.
- Adequate levels of supports for abused persons, including adequate funding of child welfare services, adult protective services, and rape and domestic violence counseling services and shelters.
- Massive public education campaigns to help New Mexicans recognize abuse for what it is and take steps to end it. Men who are willing to stand up and condemn abuse should be involved in all such campaigns, speaking to other men about the “unmanliness” of abuse. These campaigns should be ongoing in schools, congregations, places of work, and the media.
- Oppose the use of excessive force by law enforcement.
- Support demilitarization of law enforcement.
- Oppose privatization of law enforcement.
- Support a fully funded enhanced basic training and relevant ongoing in-service training in recognition that 16 weeks of initial training is not sufficient.
- Support increased training for de-escalation procedures for law enforcement including the use of behavioral health teams.
- Support strong civilian community oversight of law enforcement agencies including transparency in the hiring and firing of officers, recommending disciplinary action, budgets, and policies.
- Encourage the community policing model.
- Strengthen the laws that prevent illegal seizure of cash and property from New Mexicans without first bringing criminal charges against them in accordance with the 4th Amendment which protects against prevents unreasonable search and seizure.
- Expand and strengthen background checks for firearm purchases and close dangerous loopholes in our current laws.
- Repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA) that revokes dangerous legal immunity protections for firearm manufacturers and sellers.
- Oppose the sale of assault weapons and large capacity ammunition magazines by reinstating and strengthening the assault weapons ban.
- Support efforts for the CDC to study the effects of gun violence as a public health issue.
- Support the enactment and enforcement of aggressive laws against illegal gun trafficking.
- Support a balance between responsible gun ownership and policy that maximizes public safety, and ensures respect for our fundamental freedoms while protecting the public against gun violence.
New Mexico Democrats support the right of everyone to live in a healthy environment with clean air, water, and land, and be protected from health and safety risks associated with environmental contamination.
We focus our platform for “environmental public safety” on measures designed to immediately and urgently protect the public from the risks to human health and safety caused by the environmental contamination from industrial waste of all kinds, including nuclear, petrochemical, and heavy metals, wherever it occurs. Risks may have been a long time in the making or of recent or probable future occurrence, but action to mitigate or eliminate them is urgent.
We include “environmental public safety” under “public safety” rather than “Energy and Environment.” Many of the “environment” platform suggestions pertain to ways the public needs to be protected from environmental contamination. We propose expanding the concept of “public safety” in the state Democratic Party platform to include these aspects of environmental safety and danger, both because that is what they are and because it is important for the public to see them that way, as issues of protection from corporate predation.
- Control/eliminate fracking
- Support full disclosure to the appropriate government regulators as public information of all chemicals by businesses and municipalities discharged or injected into the ground or maintained on the surface.
- Support curtailing use, including for fracking, of water if the use results in its removal from the local water supply or limits its reuse because of pollution.
- Increase funding of the state Oil Conservation Division. Adequately staff all offices with qualified personnel at a competitive salary to oversee drilled wells, witness and verify the integrity of all well bores, and enforce state and EPA regulations. We urge civic and public involvement and oversight of this process. The burden of this oversight should fall on the relevant industries and not the public.
- Air and water quality assessments must be performed by an independent entity before, during, and after all new well drilling so that all concerns of pollution and contamination can be identified, quantified, and reclaimed.
- Concrete well liners, wastewater ponds, and containment tanks that protect groundwater from pollution must be independently certified reliable for the entire life of the well.
- Democrats are committed to closing the Halliburton loophole that strips the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of its ability to regulate hydraulic fracturing, and ensuring that tough safeguards are in place, including Safe Drinking Water Act provisions, to protect local water supplies.
- Industry must be able to account for all water, from its origination source, the amount used and recovered, the quality of what water is produced, and where the water ultimately ends up. Produced water must meet surface and groundwater standards.
- We call on the New Mexico Legislature and the Congress of the United States to reassess all leases of public lands, especially oil shale leases, delaying the lease of any further state or federal lands for oil shale and natural gas development until environmental concerns have been satisfactorily reviewed and resolved.
- We support a moratorium on building new nuclear facilities until a safe technology is created.
- We believe that shipping high level toxic nuclear waste to New Mexico should be prohibited.
Preserve the rights of state/local governments to establish laws, regulations, moratoriums, etc. to protect their citizens from environmental hazards by requiring more stringent controls and specifications than those established by higher levels of government
- Any process for extracting natural resources must not threaten public health, safety, and welfare. Local governments must have the right to ban, regulate, or issue moratoria on these processes to protect their communities
- Support local ordinances, state legislation, and federal programs that require strict reclamation bonds and programs to ensure that industry stakeholders are directly liable for all public health, property loss, local business, water use, environmental mitigation and other costs resulting from mining and drilling operations, as well as significant penalties in the event of irreparable damage.
We believe the potential for New Mexicans to suffer harm from incidents and accidents arising from exposure to nuclear materials is high, given that our state is home to two nuclear laboratories (Sandia and Los Alamos) and the Waste Pilot Project (WIPP). We recognize that nuclear material of all kinds poses inherent risks to safety and encourage stronger safety-focused oversight and accountability. We support job driven education (including apprenticeships) that meet Lab needs and improve safe handling of nuclear materials, and want to take advantage of the economic opportunities that our nuclear facilities could offer to New Mexico.
We urge our NM Congressional delegation and other public officials to
- Lobby for continued public access to nuclear safety reports
- Support increased oversight of New Mexico nuclear facilities by the U.S. Department of Energy and New Mexico regulators.
- Support establishing fines for safety violations and mishaps sufficient to stimulate improved compliance with safety practices, followed by increased enforcement and collection. Double and triple fines for repeat violations.
- Support (1) funding of higher educational programs by labs’ management contractors; (2) putting such items in contractors’ budgets; (3) DOE dispensing funds appropriately; (4) holding DOE accountable for safety issues.
We urge our Congressional delegation and U.S. government officials to:
- Evaluate nuclear weapons policies and increase fail-safe procedures for authorizing use of nuclear weapons
The health of our citizens is essential to the strength of our nation. We believe that government’s policies should “promote the general Welfare and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves…” as written in the opening lines of the Constitution of the United States. We believe, as a matter of social justice, that health care for all in the United States is a basic and necessary human right, that it is essential to the security of our nation, and that it serves the common good.
Universal access to necessary medical services is required to preserve freedom, liberty, opportunity, and the ability to be productive. We support passage of the New Mexico Health Security Plan as a first step in the process toward a quality universal single-payer health care system that is independent of employment and focuses on patient care first and foremost.
- Pass and fund the New Mexico Health Security Plan, or other legislation that provides a statewide, unified, non-profit, universal health care payment system for New Mexico
- Provide full coverage for persons with pre-existing conditions
- Establish full portability and continuity of health care coverage that eliminates linking coverage to one’s employment
- Create a health care financing system operated by the members, for the members, with member interest as the focus
- Cover all New Mexicans, unless they already have full coverage through other means (e.g., federal or military coverage)
- All children with Centennial Care for Children (SCHIP), regardless of income [currently, NM SCHIP has an income ceiling (300% FPL for kids 0-6; 240% of FPL for kids 6-19)]
- Everyone, regardless of pre-existing conditions
- Guarantee provision of and funding for comprehensive health care for all New Mexicans, to include but not be limited to: medical and dental care; full reproductive health services including prenatal and postnatal maternal care, that respects a woman’s right to choose; prescribed drugs; mental health care (including case management); dental, vision, hearing, and speech care; rural health care; home and community-based care to avert institutionalization; long term care; chronic disease care; end of life/hospice care; preventive medicine, including chiropractic and acupuncture; physical and occupational therapy; durable medical equipment and medical supplies; laboratory and imaging services; inpatient and outpatient hospital care; drug and alcohol abuse rehabilitation
- Include coverage/care for conditions that manifest long after the cause/trauma/ infection/exposure has happened—e.g., rehabilitation for brain injuries sustained through repeated trauma as in sports that manifest at a much later date; exposure to harmful materials at work such as toxic chemicals, silicon, asbestos, coal dust; etc.
- Expand and strengthen respite care and in-home support services including adequate background checks prior to licensure, and promote an in-home support services system that emphasize independence rather than institutionalization and addresses the needs of all, including people with all levels of disabilities, of any age.
- Combat drug and alcohol addiction, including opioid addiction, by vastly expanding access to prevention and treatment, supporting recovery, helping community organizations, and promoting better practices by prescribers.
- Continue to support the full legalized use of medical cannabis when prescribed for a patient by a physician; monitor state practice to assure that eligible residents get the medications they need
- Support new health care delivery models that emphasize the provision of continuous, comprehensive, and coordinated care.
- Maximize numbers and types of providers who can be reimbursed for providing care; relieve pressure on physicians
- Promote use of properly credentialed peer specialists, medical assistants, community health workers, aides, to provide routine health and wellness care
- Increase training opportunities in New Mexico for health care professionals at all levels
- Do not limit locations where care can be provided; promote out-of-office care that takes care to people, especially people with disabilities, homebound, living in remote areas, and the like
- Geographic—assure routine access to care in rural and hard-to-reach areas using mobile clinics, on-line access, other advanced techniques
- Cultural and linguistic—maximize likelihood that people will be seen by culturally and linguistically competent caregivers
- Affordable—use public funding to keep out-of-pocket costs to $0 for all persons at or below 250% of Federal Poverty Level; sliding scale for higher incomes.
- Pressure the federal government to negotiate drug prices, for Medicare and Medicaid specifically, but also for all other patients in the United States
- Support the state in coordinating with the federal government in regulating and controlling the cost of prescription drugs
- Permit the New Mexico Department of Human Services to negotiate vaccine costs directly with the vaccine industry.
- Create a health care system that proactively focuses on wellness, primary care, preventive medicine, public health, and disease prevention.
- Base public policies about prevention and treatment of disease on scientifically sound research.
- Ensure economic and physical access to multilingual health care services.
- Reduce health care disparities based on race/ethnicity, gender, place of residence, disability, and other factors.
- Support full funding for community clinics and health centers that serve low-income, rural, and homeless populations throughout the state, including prompt and accurate payment of the charges these clinics and centers submit to government agencies.
- Facilitate and encourage the full partnership of health care providers, including nurses and home health providers, in redesigning our current health care system.
- Encourage regional input in health care system design.
- Eliminate discrimination in insurance coverage and healthcare for transgender and gender nonconforming individuals, as well as full coverage of all transition-related care.
- Phase out Medicare’s 2-year waiting period for SSDI benefit recipients, and eliminate it immediately for people with life-threatening illnesses.
- Provide for the long-term solvency of Medicare. Assure full and adequate funding for Medicare and Medicaid so that many more health care providers are willing to participate than do so at present.
- Simplify language and plan choices for ease of understanding to individuals making health coverage decisions;
- Support a requirement that all HMOs and health insurers obtain prior approval from the state before rates can be increased and when the time comes that all New Mexicans are covered by publicly funded health care, support an independent panel free of health care industry conflict to oversee rate increases, cost-effectiveness, and quality of care;
- Enforce the Patient’s Bill of Rights; affirm that medical decisions must be made with respect for patients’ rights to privacy and freedom to have control over their lives with fully informed consent.
- Recognize the physical and financial burdens of family caregivers and support legislation and programs to provide adequate training, assistive interventions, and financial safety nets such as employer savings and tax credits
- Provide transparency, accountability, and fairness in health care
- Guarantee a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including geographically feasible access to a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay. We oppose any effort to weaken or undermine that right, including limiting funding of essential female reproductive health services such as those provided by Planned Parenthood, or forcing local clinics to close.
- Eliminate financial barriers to contraceptive services and pre- and post-natal care, such as through universal health care, which will also significantly reduce abortion rates.
- Enact “Death with Dignity”/” Right to Die” legislation to allow terminally-ill patients and their doctors to discuss end-of-life decisions and permit medical personnel to assist terminally ill patients with ending their lives at the patient’s discretion, compassionately limiting their pain and suffering.
Reduce legislative/administrative barriers, diversions, misbehavior; increase accountability, improve systems
- Work to strengthen Centennial Care and Medicare and oppose efforts to privatize such safety net programs;
- Monitor implementation of legislation enacted to remedy any uncertainty concerning dispensing of medical cannabis that will provide for rights of a medical cannabis patients and specify means and manner of dispensing to qualified patients;
- Protect funding for health care services as mandated by voters from being transferred or redirected for any other purpose
- Create quality jobs in health and behavioral health care that stay in New Mexico because health care money stays in New Mexico, including all database operations and diagnostics as well as direct care
- Support increased funding and accountability for mental health care parity – improving and broadening existing mental health programs – and call for government-funded providers to have users of services on their staff and governing boards.
- Increase the transparency and accountability of medical costs and foster public input in decision-making bodies established to enact elements of New Mexico’s plan to better evaluate both insurance and health care policies, to help improve the quality of care and reduce the cost of care.
- Ensure that all health care models have strong cost containment measures and are transparent and accountable to the consumers and the public to significantly lower total administrative costs and improve the quality of care.
- Eliminate profiteering in health care and health care financing.
- Invest in public health services, especially in/for poor, rural, and minority communities
- Ensure adequate funding of public health education at the undergraduate, graduate, and medical school levels as well as adequate funding of residency training programs in public health, preventive medicine, and its subspecialties.
- Address and correct social determinants of health such as poverty, unemployment, experience of discrimination, and housing instability.
Climate change is the most important existential defining issue of our time. We must use every tool available to reduce emissions now. Democrats support all efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and use of fossil fuels while the state and nation undertake the transition to renewable energy necessitated by climate change. Efforts must include incentives to promote renewables and disincentives for continued exploration, production, and use of fossil fuels.
Our platform for “energy sources” focuses on production and consumption issues, preparing for the global renewable energy transition necessitated by the climate change occurring due to human production of greenhouse gases. Emphasis is on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and use of fossil fuels and increasing production and use of renewables.
- Develop and enforce a statewide plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions more than 80 percent below 2005 levels and have 100% renewable electricity by 2050 (these are compatible with the goals set by the 2016 Paris Climate Accord.
- Promote climate leadership at the local level and an active partnership with cities and rural communities through incentives, technical assistance, development of regional action networks, support for pilot projects, and development to scale.
- Support all efforts to require New Mexico’s public utilities (especially PNM) to work quickly and effectively to reach the goal of at least 50% renewables by 2030, increasing to 100% by 2050 (these are compatible with the goals set by the 2016 Paris Climate Accord).
- Incentivize wind, solar, and other renewable energy production over the development of new natural gas power plants.
- Support a requirement that all public buildings or buildings used by public agencies switch to at least 50% renewable energy use by 2030.
- Fund researchers, industry, and non-profits to develop technologies to produce and distribute renewable energy statewide.
- Reinstate the state Renewable Energy Tax credit and establish new rebate programs for adoption of renewable energy sources.
- Ensure that decentralized residential and commercial solar producers throughout the state may sell the energy they produce into the grid (i.e., that public utilities must buy it, and not tax the producers).
- Push the U.S. Department of Energy to redirect the focus of its National Laboratories, including Los Alamos and Sandia, away from nuclear production and research and toward new, more efficient, cheaper, and easier to use renewables of all types (noting that nuclear power is NOT a renewable).
- Invest in a statewide publicly accessible electric vehicle charging network, clean public transportation, and bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure across our urban and rural areas.
- Accelerate construction of new transmission lines to get low-cost renewable energy to market.
- Support all approaches to reducing vehicular emissions, in compliance with provisions of the Paris Climate Accord
- Tax the release of carbon dioxide, methane, and other greenhouse gases high enough to incentivize corporations to reduce emissions and provide public resources to support actions to offset their costs to the community in health and safety over the long term
- Prohibit flaring, enforce heavy fines/penalties for violations
- Establish comprehensive environmental pollution taxes that reflect our commitment to a clean energy future by eliminating tax breaks and subsidies for polluting corporations
- Restrict/deny access to not-yet-tapped deposits of oil, gas, and other energy-related natural resources
- Support stringent requirements and fees for commercial access to our mineral, petroleum, forest, and water resources.
- Update/increase the rents and royalties paid for mining oil and gas by adjusting for inflation (these royalties haven’t changed since the 1920s and attempts to update them have been unsuccessful), including wasted gas and oil leakage as part of what gets paid for, and possibly adjusting the increases in value of the product since the 1920s, if not covered by inflation.
- Establish programs and incentives to cut energy waste in American homes, schools, hospitals, and offices through energy efficient improvements; modernize our electric grid and make New Mexico manufacturing clean and efficient (see November 2017 Green Fire Times article, pp. 31-32 “New Mexico Ranks in the Bottom Third Nationally in Energy Efficiency,” for many concrete steps New Mexico should take).
- Encourage the goal of “Net Zero Energy Emissions” in new home construction by 2020, and “Net Zero Energy Emissions” in new commercial construction by 2030
- Demand that the Department of Justice investigate allegations of corporate fraud on the part of fossil fuel companies accused of misleading shareholders and the public on the scientific reality of climate change.
We focus our platform suggestions for “environmental conservation” on medium- and longer-term measures that preserve, conserve, and hopefully augment essential public resources such as water, forests, and other living species, for which action must begin now and be sustained long into the future.
- Work to improve, and oppose any attempt to weaken the federal Endangered Species Act, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, and similar federal and state laws or regulations.
- Eliminate exemptions/loopholes for resource extraction companies and processes from the requirements of the Clean Water Act, Safe Drinking Water Act, Clean Air Act, Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act, the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, and the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (superfund cleanup).
- New Mexico revised its 40-Year Water Development Plan in 2016. Enforce it, offer technical assistance and financing for regions working to implement it, support pilot projects.
- Promote water policies that prioritize water conservation and careful management of limited water supplies, treating the environment’s needs as equal to other interests.
- Promote strong local and federal enforcement of the Clean Water Act that protects water purity, wetlands and wildlife ecosystems.
- Incentivize reduction of residential, agricultural, and industrial water usage and science-based, sustainable water policies.
- Support long-range planning and the restriction of new development for which there would be inadequate supplies of water.
- Support the cultural heritage and historical use of acequias and other traditional irrigation practices.
Democrats believe that our state lands belong to all New Mexicans and should be used to further the common good.
- Support the protection of natural habitats and intact ecosystems through science-based management of public lands that promotes the optimal balance between human use and the natural world, with special attention paid to protection of threatened and endangered species.
- Support sustainable utilization and conservation of natural resources and public lands through appropriate taxation for extraction of non-renewable natural resources and thoughtful land use planning to combat suburban sprawl; reject any sale of public forestry and park lands; support dedicated funding for state parks; and, safeguard the state’s forests through sustained yield best practices forestry, the elimination of clear cutting (and subsidies for roads to enable clear cutting) to preserve natural habitat diversity and connectivity, soil conservation measures, the preservation of heritage trees, and carbon sequestration technique
- Oppose the sale of public lands to developers or individuals which would restrict public access.
- We support the protection and reclamation of New Mexico’s public lands and natural resources from damage inflicted by extractive industries.
- We oppose the Gila River diversion
- We support the protection and preservation of our National and State Parks, Forests, and Monuments, World Heritage Sites, Native American sacred sites.
- Support the Endangered Species Act to protect threatened and endangered species.
- Enlist farmers and ranchers as partners in promoting conservation and stewardship.
All over the United States, half of renter households are being priced out of housing. Almost 54,000 working households in New Mexico were severely cost burdened in 2014—meaning they spent over 50% of their income on rent. This is about 1 in 5 working households in the state. Another 1 in 5 working households spent between 30% and 50% of their income for rent. The average renter household makes $12.53 an hour; someone making minimum wage makes $7.50 an hour in most of the state. Unfortunately, a renter household would have to make $16.06 an hour to afford a 2-bedroom apartment at the Fair Market Rent of $835 a month. New Mexico has a few programs that increase housing affordability, but they don’t produce enough units and they are cumbersome to use.
Other states do more than New Mexico to provide affordable housing. We strongly support household-based approaches including:
- Providing rent subsidies for all New Mexico households paying more than 30% of their income for rent (currently, about 40% of New Mexican households pay more than 30% of their income for rent, with half of those paying over 50%, but subsidies are available to only about 1 in 10 of these cost-burdened households).
- Offering tax incentives that racially and socioeconomically desegregate new and existing neighborhoods (i.e., mixed-use housing).
- Creating and incentivizing neighborhood development that integrates housing, jobs in retail and other businesses, transportation, and recreation.
We also support adoption in New Mexico of any or all of the following housing production strategies:
- Developing a statewide plan that (a) establishes a “fair share” of housing for every municipality in the state, (b) is enforceable, and (c), uses collaboration in all aspects, planning and production—New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maine, Illinois, Minnesota, and Arizona
- Reducing regulatory barriers created by zoning, construction and other codes to expedite creation of new units that revitalize deteriorating neighborhoods and communities; these allow smoother processing, one-stop applications even though multiple jurisdictions are affected, expedited approval processes—these practices have cut housing development costs by 10 to 40 percent in New Jersey; other states using these practices include Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, New York, Rhode Island, and Texas.
- Incentivizing housing development that follows transportation lines, jobs creation (New Jersey, Massachusetts, others).
- Pursuing multiple goals simultaneously (e.g., economic development plus housing—Oregon, New Jersey) and partnering with overlapping interests—special needs, elderly, rural, child welfare—Minnesota, Michigan, Rhode Island.
- Using state funds to support Housing Trust Funds and affordable housing tax credits that parallel federal programs—to finance general affordable housing and special needs housing.
- Establishing a special tax on luxury development, with collections going into a Housing Trust Fund or other mechanism that then funds new unit construction in areas of high need—Santa Fe tried to establish such a tax in 2015—called the Workforce Housing Funding Initiative—but it didn’t pass. Nevertheless, Santa Fe does have an “impact fee” imposed on development that is used for a variety of activities that make it less expensive for developers to produce reasonably-priced housing, such as roads and other infrastructure in areas being developed.
- Establishing a Deep Subsidy Program, to invest more state funds in projects that aim to serve households with incomes below 30 percent of area median income (about the federal poverty level.
- Creating programs to acquire land in high priority areas, including brownfields and other contaminated land, and make it available to developers to clean up and create affordable housing.
- Creating a loan program specifically for small rental projects (5-25 units) suitable for “in-fill” in already-developed neighborhoods.
- Following the practice of many states to establish a housing preservation program to assure that currently affordable housing units that way.
- Enacting zoning ordinances whereby a portion of new development housing is set aside for low and middle-income households, called “Inclusionary Zoning,” but be sure they are not vitiated by allowing developers to “buy out” at levels insufficient to support production of affordable housing elsewhere.
Democrats believe that an educated populace is the cornerstone of sustainable democracy, and the single most important driver of economic prosperity. Affordable, high-quality pre-K through college education is a basic right that is protected by many dedicated, high-quality educators. We support making debt-free college a reality for all New Mexicans. We believe that it is the responsibility of the government to ensure that the public education system prepares all to participate meaningfully in society.
- We believe that a high quality public education is a basic right and a sound investment with real and tangible returns for our citizens and economy and is a necessary component of a healthy democracy.
- We support fully funded, free public education for every student from high quality affordable pre-kindergarten education through vocational and/or post-secondary education.
- We support proficiency in second languages including coding as a requirement for graduation from any state-accredited high school in New Mexico
- We support LGBTQIA-inclusive comprehensive sex education.
- We support concrete measures to increase racial harmony within schools to reduce the impediments to student performance, to include cultural sensitivity training for staff, board members, and students; and supports for translating what is learned in trainings into concrete lesson plans that are actually used.
- We support training programs around the state to prepare workers for solar and wind technology, installation, and maintenance.
- We support the establishment of Registered Apprenticeship Programs in New Mexico, and strongly urge Congress to pass the CHANCE-in-Tech Act.
- We support resources for the diversification of curricula for students with specific needs including but not limited to special education and gifted, high and low achieving students, low income, and English as second language.
- We support the rights of teachers and parents to influence their own curricula.
- We encourage and support programs for anti-bullying, mental and behavioral health, and conflict resolution in the schools, including recovery from substance with family participation.
- We support programs for prisoner reform through education that is uniform statewide including obtaining a GED, a high school diploma, an advanced degree, or vocational training while supporting a state property tax.
- We support having an RN present in every public school.
- We support every classroom having access to an appropriately trained teaching assistant.
- We support the NGSS Standards and Framework in their entirety. We also encourage the additions of categories that will augment deficiencies in content to ensure all graduates are capable of understanding and critically evaluating the scientific basis for the phenomenon called Global Warming and being qualified to work toward solutions.
- We support having at least one social worker in every public school, based on school enrollment.
- We urge our New Mexico legislators to find additional and diversified sources of revenue to protect the public education system from volatility in the oil and gas market.
- We must adequately fund and incentivize advanced research in our Universities and National Laboratories to restore our country’s scientific edge and global competitiveness.
- New Mexico teachers face special challenges related to the high proportion (61%) of English Language Learners in our schools. Special training is needed to assure that teachers can help students achieve language and mathematical proficiency; adequate compensation is needed to assure that New Mexico schools can hire qualified teachers. We believe that New Mexico should meet or exceed the nationwide average salary and benefits for educational professionals, which currently it does not do. Specifically, we support legislation that assures staff unit values for the State Equalization Guarantee (based on the 1974 Public School Finance Act) are set at a level that meets or exceeds median pays scales throughout the rest of the United States.
- We support actions needed to narrow New Mexico subject area certification requirements to reflect the best practices displayed by higher performing states, rather than continued in their current, broadly interpretable manner (i.e. Secondary Science certification verses Physics, Chemistry level specificity). We believe New Mexico should start to use subject-specific certifications for all newly hired teaching staff, while employing a clear, timeline determined, equitable pathway for equal certificate specificity for those teaching staff already employed within our public schools
- We support increasing the distribution from the Land Grant Permanent Fund to support high quality early childhood education.
- We support intensive immersion programs in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and foreign languages for all students.
- We support community college education and other opportunities to ensure all citizens can be trained and certified to work in the evolving job markets of the future.
- We support rescinding the waiver for oversized classrooms and restoring class sizes to their pre-shortfall levels by hiring more teachers.
- We believe that a capitalist democracy which depends upon an informed public should prioritize financial literacy, critical thinking, and civics as a means of sustaining, stewarding, and strengthening American democracy.
- We support restoring dignity and balance to the use of standardized tests in our classrooms.
- We understand that teachers are highly dedicated and motivated and reject punitive impacts to their evaluations and impacts to the reputations and grades of community schools based on standardized test data that does not adequately quantify the quality of education provided.
- PARCC data should be used to inform where to direct additional resources and support and should not be used to evaluate a teacher’s performance, effort, or commitment.
- We support the development of a teacher evaluation model that uses multiple indicators based on classroom and school evidence.
- We resist federal programs that weaken schools by funding private school vouchers with public school money.
- We believe Secretary of Education should be appointed by the Public Education Commission and have a New Mexico Education Administration Certification.
We will shut down the School to Prison Pipeline by investing in your kids, not prisons. We believe in prevention and making sure that your kids have viable non-criminal options. We want diplomas, not rap sheets, for our kids. We will invest in education and jobs, not jails, for our kids, by providing linkages to apprenticeships, work opportunities, and mentoring programs for our youth. We will invest in school retention, graduation and workforce integration policies for our kids.
New Mexico Democrats will:
- Shut Down the School to Prison Pipeline.
We are opposed to mass incarceration and support common sense sentencing reforms. We reject bumper-sticker solutions to complex social problems. We recognize that prison is not the answer to every problem and we support meaningful changes in our sentencing rules. We will work to substantially reduce our prison population and transmit those savings to more effective prevention, treatment and rehabilitation programs.
We will promote and expand alternatives to incarceration for non-violent offenders, such as drug courts, veteran’s courts, and other diversionary programs. We will prioritize prevention, treatment and rehabilitation over incarceration for non-violent offenders.
New Mexico Democrats will work toward the following goals:
- End Mass Incarceration
Released prisoners should be allowed to move forward with their lives after they have done their time and paid their debt to society. We will provide released prisoners with a fair chance to start their lives over by removing unjust roadblocks to reentry. We are committed to ending the system of perpetual punishment and we will work tirelessly to reduce recidivism rates for stronger families and communities in New Mexico.
We will undertake a systematic, wide-ranging and thorough review of all New Mexico laws that unjustly pon a criminal conviction (e.g., restrictions on housing options, high risk of unemployment, restrictions on eligibility for public benefits, prohibitions on voting), to substantially reduce recidivism and provide for the effective re-integration of prisoners into our communities.
We will adopt a fair, comprehensive and effective criminal record expungement statute to assist with the positive reintegration into our society of ex-offenders.
New Mexico Democrats will:
- End the System of Perpetual Punishment of Ex-Offenders
- Support the Full Restoration of All Civil Rights by Ex-Offenders Who Have Served Their Term of Incarceration and Supervision
- Support Comprehensive Re-Entry Services for Ex-Offenders to Prevent Recidivism
- Adopt Criminal Record Expungement Legislation for Non-Violent Offenders, Veterans and Victims of Human Trafficking
- Support Ban the Box Legislation
- Limit the Number of Collateral Consequences to a Criminal Conviction for Non-Violent Offenders (collateral consequences include restrictions on housing options, high risk of unemployment, restrictions on eligibility for public benefits, prohibitions on voting)
- Legalize, Regulate and Tax Marijuana for Recreational Use
- Provide Drug Treatment for Every Person With an Alcohol or Substance Abuse Disorder
- Reallocate Cost Savings from reducing incarceration to Education and Job Training Programs
- Divert Low-Level Drug Offenders from Lengthy Prison Terms
Equal justice for all is not just a slogan, it is the foundation of our Democracy.
New Mexico Democrats will:
- Provide Balanced Funding for District Attorney and Public Defender Agencies
- Support Drug Courts, Veteran’s Courts and Other Diversionary Programs
- Create an Independent Wrongful Conviction Review Commission
- End the Practice of Stacking Charges by District Attorneys
- Continue Reforming the Cash Bail System
- End the War on the Poor and Abolish Debtor’s Prisons for Unpaid Justice Debts
- Prioritize Funding for Labs to Complete All Rape Kits in a Timely Manner
- Support the Use of DNA Testing to Protect the Wrongfully Accused and Set Free the Wrongfully Convicted
- Support the Implementation of Restorative Justice Practices
We acknowledge the rights of all persons to be treated equally, with dignity and respect, regardless of race, color, creed, gender identity, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, physical ability, cognitive ability, or age.
We affirm that:
- The rights of free speech, free press, peaceful assembly, due process, and habeas corpus must be defended and upheld.
- Personal choices, including reproductive choice, domestic partnership, end of life options, religious choice, including freedom from and of religion, and marriage equality, are fundamental rights.
- We oppose unreasonable searches and domestic surveillance including the USA Patriot Act.
- Improve conditions and defend human rights for the incarcerated.
- Embrace racial and socio-economic equality and counter discrimination in hiring practices and ongoing employment, including use of affirmative action as part of academic admissions.
We must address violence waged against people of color and fight to end it. We must condemn hate speech that creates a fertile climate for violence.
- Promote civility and speak out against bigotry and other forms of intolerance that have entered our political discourse.
- Call out the national trend of the disproportionate use of the death penalty against people of color and other disenfranchised people.
A just and functioning society can only exist when all people have an equal voice. Every person of voting age residing in New Mexico has a right and should be encouraged to vote. We actively work to prevent and remove obstructions to voting in any local or federal election. We also believe that the government has the right to regulate campaign finance.
Democrats believe we must fight to preserve the essence of the longest standing democracy in the world: a government that represents the American people, not just a handful of politically influential special interests.
The Democratic Party will:
- Fight to overturn Citizens United.
- Require full disclosure of all major contributions in political and issue campaigns.
- Fight for campaign finance reform and repeal laws that enable secret money in politics.
- Fight to eliminate super PACs.
- Create competitive public campaign financing to stop the influence of big donors and special interest groups.
- Promote the ability of the average citizen to run for the legislature by paying legislators a fair salary.
- Use modern technology for real-time disclosure of hard money campaign contributions & expenditures.
- Adopt strict forfeiture of office and forfeiture of pension penalties for willful violators of campaign finance reporting laws.
The Democratic Party will:
- Recognize that Americans’ right to vote is sacred and fundamental.
- Restore the sections of the Voting Rights Act recently gutted by the U.S. Supreme Court (Shelby County v. Holder, 570U.S. 2 (2013).
- Support ranked choice voting to make democracy more fair and functional in all elections.
- Demand up-to-date election processes that guarantee transparency, integrity, and accountability in the voter software, and equipment with archived paper ballots.
- End gerrymandering that gives unfair advantage to a particular political party; establish a nonpartisan commission to draw district boundaries, following California’s example of giving priority to geographical continuity and fair representation for “communities of interest” (groups of people with similar interests) while adhering to Voting Rights Act requirements.
- Create and give authority to an independent redistricting commission separate from the legislative process.
- Fight against voter suppression tactics such as Voter ID Laws and limited polling sites, days, hours.
- Promote Early Voting and
- Support the ability for New Mexico voters to use straight-ticket, party-preference voting.
- Repeal all voting disenfranchisement laws.
Clean Government Requires That We Prohibit Real or Perceived Conflicts of Interest by Public Officials.
The Democratic Party will:
- Require disclosure of authors and their affiliations, of significant portions of legislation.
- Stop the revolving door between industry and government employment.
- Require full financial disclosure by all elected officials and paid lobbyists/consultants.
- Advocate for the creation of an independent ethics commission amendment to the NM constitution
A free and open media with diverse ownership and multiple opposing views from independent journalists is essential to a functional democracy because voters must be informed to make sound voting decisions. We believe that the massive media mergers have the potential to stifle information by limiting the number of voices, opinions, and facts that inform our world view.
- Fight for Net Neutrality so that all internet content is equally accessible without favoring or blocking particular content, charging differential rates, or providing different upload/download speeds. The internet must remain open and uncensored.
- Support programs that ensure all New Mexicans, including rural New Mexicans, will have access to high-speed, affordable Internet.
- Commit to giving candidates free and equal media time and coverage during elections.
- Enforce the “Sherman Anti-Trust” Act to break the monopoly on information in individual media markets.
- Dismantle media companies that are monopolies in various geographic areas.
- Guarantee continued support and funding for NPR, PBS and other progressive public media.
- Protect journalists and media organizations from intimidation and resist efforts to marginalize and undermine objective media sources.
- Encourage accurate portrayals of people of color in the media to counteract the systemic racism that people of color experience collectively.
- Support a NM film industry that creates movies, tv shows, and commercials that have people of all races, ethnicities, nationalities, religions, and gender identities, as reflected in the diverse demographics of our State.
- Support programs that educate people to identify fake news.
- Ensure that social media providers provide robust protection of private data
We affirm that:
- Public figures in the media should treat all women with respect and dignity. We call for eliminating the objectification of women and men in press, radio, film, tv, and news as a means of acquiring status or employment.
Democrats recognize the role of the arts toward making a community attractive to its citizens, tourists, labor force, and business partners and are committed to investing in the arts to continue our state’s rich cultural heritage. The arts also contribute to community building and are part of communicating new ideas. Democrats will continue to advocate strongly for funding of the arts in our cities, schools, and public spaces and support public funding for arts programs.
- Supporting the arts through government funding, grants, marketing assistance, training, and increased market access. Building awareness of entrepreneurial services and support such as small business development centers within the arts community.
- Fighting to restore public funding for the U.S. National Endowment for the Arts and for the U.S. National Endowment for the Humanities, both government agencies.
- Ensuring that arts and music are included within all public school curricula across New Mexico.
- Connecting with the film industry; ensuring arts participation in the New Mexico film industry.
- Making sure that government and other funding is adequately distributed to organizations as well as directly to the individual-emerging artists in New Mexico.
- Bolstering New Mexico’s reputation as an arts hub and tourist destination.
- Global branding of New Mexico as a destination for domestic and international tourism.
- Portraying our State’s beautiful terrain, public lands and monuments, opportunities for adventure, wildlife, and our majority Native American, Hispanic, and multi-cultural identity.
- Protecting freedom of expression and speech.
- Protect artists’ freedom of expression and defend the rights of artists to question authority and inspire our people to continue to fight for a better world.
- Providing intellectual property protections for iconic cultural images that originate in New Mexico.
Democrats call for the use of diplomacy, alliances, and peacebuilding interventions of non-governmental organizations and re-fostering trust in America to resolve international conflicts, and support provision of safe haven and refuge to those fleeing the consequences of ongoing conflict. All actions of United States institutions and supporting organizations—including the military, intelligence agencies, state department, and military contractors, and any U.S. international business transactions —should reflect respect, integrity, and ethical behavior in accordance with all international norms and laws. Democrats support expanded trade and international partnership opportunities to advance economic opportunities in NM while opposing any trade agreement that will override our environmental and labor protections.
- Honor agreements to naturalize non-citizen service members following discharge.
- Oppose privatizing the military, the use of contract mercenaries, and war profiteering.
- Support open and transparent trade policy that has representation of labor, environmentalists, economists, and public opinion. Trade policy must be drafted in the open, as a freely accessible and unclassified document.
- Oppose the use of fast track procedures that circumvent the Democratic process to pass trade agreements.
- We oppose investor-state dispute provisions that circumvent U.S. sovereign law and undermine local power to adjudicate disputes with foreign corporations.
- Condemn the use of torture.
- Support providing exit strategies from nations already devastated by current military operations that hire and train locals rather than global corporate-government contractors in target nations.
- For the health and safety of the people of Afghanistan, we support a plan for the safe withdrawal of all U.S. troops from Afghanistan.
- Support resolution of conflicts and promotion of human rights and self-determination through strengthening the rule of law, and prioritizing diplomacy, conventions and treaties, and demilitarization over use of force.
- Oppose any unilateral, unprovoked war against any nation that does not attack or invade the U.S.
- Urge Congress and U.S. government officials to evaluate nuclear weapons policies and the authorization to use nuclear weapons, with the intent of reducing the risk of their use.
- Urge our government officials to continue to: (1) reduce nuclear warheads; (2) research our nuclear warheads’ safety, security, and reliability; and (3) reprioritize and reinstate funding and hiring for research in renewable energy research and development at Los Alamos and Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico.
- We condemn all acts of terrorism. Terrorism is not just a Muslim issue and no exceptions or distinctions should be made for members of any race or religious group who commits an act of murder in order to express hate or political ideology.
- We must defeat ISIS, al Qaeda, and their affiliates, and prevent other groups from emerging in their place. Democrats will continue to lead a broad coalition of allies and partners to destroy ISIS’ stronghold in Iraq and Syria.
- We reject the Republican party’s vilification of Muslims and Islam. It violates the religious freedom that is a fundamental value of our country and feeds into ISIS’ vile narrative.
- We must neutralize North Korea’s ability to make nuclear weapons and eliminate their pathways for acquiring nuclear material.
We support foreign aid models that ensure transparency, accountability, and local participation (where possible) in emergency humanitarian aid delivery. We support foreign development aid models that open market access and investment to local small businesses in the target area and provide training in modernized entrepreneurial skills to facilitate stable economic development in target nations.
We support the right of all qualified persons who wish to serve our nation to do so without discrimination. Our country has a sacred, moral responsibility to keep faith with all our veterans and wounded warriors. Democrats fight to keep this promise through proper funding of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), defending it from any attempts at privatization, and pushing for more educational benefits, job training, combating chronic homelessness, and preventing suicide and the conditions leading to it. The party that passed the G.I. Bill of Rights will always work to protect the benefits our veterans and their families have earned in service to our nation.
- Any person, regardless of immigration status, who served and was honorably discharged from the U.S. armed forces must receive citizenship upon completion of service.
- We are proud of the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and we commit ourselves to ensuring fair treatment for LGBTQ veterans, including by proactively reviewing and upgrading discharge records for veterans who were discharged because of their sexual orientation.
- We are proud of the opening of combat positions to women.
- Our military is strongest when people of all races, religions, sexual orientations, and gender identities are honored for their service to our country.
- Our country has a moral responsibility to support all our veterans because they have put their lives on the line to defend us.
- We support full federal funding for comprehensive veteran-centric systems to fulfill our commitment to all veterans by meeting their needs upon discharge, with an emphasis on suicide prevention, employment, housing, family support, reintegration, comprehensive healthcare, and legal assistance
- The VA must be fully resourced so that every veteran gets the care that he or she has earned and deserves, including those suffering from sexual assault, mental illness and other injuries or ailments
- We reject attempts to privatize the VA.
- The VA should take responsibility to identify all unserved and underserved veterans including those that are homeless.
- War is THE LAST resort. The only reason we will ever put anyone through war is because we have exhausted all other options and our safety is in peril.
- Democrats are committed to addressing the scourge of military sexual assault. We must increase efforts to prevent sexual assault and rape, and aggressively investigate and prosecute allegations. And we must make sure victims receive timely, appropriate and comprehensive treatment for physical, emotional, and psychological trauma resulting from sexual assault.
- Provide support to care for our military family members, especially for the spouses, partners, and children who must rebuild their lives after the loss of a loved one or life-altering injury or disability.
- Push for more educational benefits, job training, and protect and preserve the post-9/11 GI Bill for future generations.
- Ensure that reservists and Guard members are treated fairly when it comes to employment, health, education benefits, deployment, and reintegration.
- Fight for every veteran to have timely access to high-quality health care including mental health care and timely processing of claims and appeals.
- Look for more ways to make certain the VA provides veteran-centric care, such as providing women and transgender with full and equal treatment, including reproductive health services; expanding mental health programs; continuing efforts to identify and treat invisible, latent, and toxic wounds of war; treating post-traumatic stress; and expanding the post-9/11 veteran’s caregiver program to include all veterans.
- Support making comprehensive dental care available to all veterans at the VA.
- Support closing loopholes in the for-profit school industry that exploits veterans, and support strengthening programs that help veterans choose the best educational programs possible.
- Prioritize military readiness by making sure our Active, Reserve, and National Guard remain the best trained and equipped in the world.
- Support our troops currently committed to the conflicts our nation is engaged in by taking them out of harm’s way, compensating them commensurate with that commitment, and adopting peace as a guiding principle.
- Support a smart, predictable defense budget that meets the strategic challenges we face and seek an economy that does not require resources from hostile regions
- Seek to create a strategic approach to evaluate military deployments.
- Oppose contractors who promote and profit from war.
Whatever SPARC comes up with, DPSFC’s platform should include:
- We urge the New Mexico Legislature to join other states in passing legislation to protect New Mexicans from being affected by differential access to the Internet and different charges for different levels of access.
- We urge the New Mexico Attorney General to join other states in suing FCC to negate its decision to end net neutrality, for the protection and economic opportunity and well-being of all New Mexicans.