Thursday, December 11, 2008

The Political Ladies of New Mexico

What’s Wrong With This Picture?

New Mexico ladies are in the news.

Albuquerquean and Sandia High School graduate, now Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano has been nominated by President-elect Barak Obama to be Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.

This picture of her was taken at the "Here's to Pete: A Celebration of Senator Domenici's Service to New Mexico and the Nation," event sponsored by New Mexico First on June 28, 2008.

Napolitano’s first job out of University of Virginia School of Law, in 1979, was as a staffer for Senator Pete Domenici's Senate Budget Committee.

New Mexico Lieutenant Governor Diane Denish sat down at a Capitol press conference with Governor Bill Richardson on Thursday, Dec. 4, 2008, to discuss the transition as Richardson prepares to go to Washington where Obama has nominated him to become Secretary of the Department of Commerce. Richardson said he would stay in new Mexico through the confirmation process, which he said might be until March.

The next day I was at the University of New Mexico bookstore to buy a textbook for next semester, when I ran into Herb Denish, the Lt. Gov.’s husband. The Lt. Gov. was visiting the bookstore to support one of her friends, Jan Haley, a photographer who was signing her newly released book, “Free Flow: The Gila River in New Mexico.”

UNM President David Schmidly presented Denish with UNM’s first official ornament.

I spoke with the Lt. Gov. telling her I had this picture of her biting her lip.

She asked me what I thought it meant? I told her I thought she was not happy with what Richardson was saying about his staying through opening of the Legislative session, Jan. 20, the same day of Obama’s inauguration. I went on to say that her repeated comment, “there is only one Governor at a time,” was accurate.

However, she is in an awful spot, having to take over the reigns of power after Richardson set his agenda. Changing direction and implementing her priorities was going to be difficult.

She shrugged and shook her head in agreement.

No quote, but just as good.

Here Richardson is indicating to his Press Secretary Gilbert Gallegos, to shut down the press conference.

Former New Mexico First Lady Alice King passed away Sunday, Dec. 7 from a stroke she suffered Friday Dec. 5. She was 78.

I photographed her at her husband's, Bruce King’s, Jan. 1, 1971, inauguration in the Roundhouse – State Capitol. It was the first of three separate inaugurations, making her the longest serving First Lady.

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