I’m writing to you in the hopes that you’ll do the right thing and come together in a bi-partisan caucus with some of your Democratic colleagues to impeach State Treasurer Robert Vigil. Now, I’m addressing this to you because I’m not sure all of your Democratic colleagues are going to uphold their end of the bargain.
This is not just a partisan assumption on my part. Instead, it is an observation of the lack of action taken by certain Democratic officials to date. You see, there is something called the “Governmental Conduct Act,” 10-16-1, et seq., which sets minimum standards of conduct – even for elected officials. It is pretty clear that any violation of the code of conduct is grounds for dismissal. In the case of the State Treasurer, the prescribed action, described in 10-16-11C, is impeachment. The Attorney General Madrid, and to a lesser extent Secretary of State Rebecca Vigil-Giron, are supposed to enforce this or at least monitor compliance. Unfortunately, neither is doing anything.
So, for those of you who are not really well versed in this whole impeachment thing, let me sum it up for you… This is not a discretionary situation. The 10-16-14C affirmatively requires (“shall”) the Attorney General to refer matters to the house of representatives “if [she] determines that there is sufficient cause to file a complaint against a public officer removable only by impeachment.”
I can’t imagine why Patricia Madrid continues to neglect her duty to the citizens of New Mexico despite the the affidavits we are all able to read. There is a reason we have three branches of government, and when one or two continually fail to look after the interests of the public, the third is supposed to take action.
Now here are the constitutional cliff notes for those of you who find the “i” word intimidating:
Article IV, Section 35 – the house of representatives is charged with impeachment, and the senate takes on the role of judge and jury. In other words, impeachment is just a declaration that there needs to be a trial. Any member of the House who doesn’t vote for impeachment is being derelict in fulfilling commitment to represent their constituents.
Article IV, Section 36 – the bottomline here is that a determination needs to be made whether or not they should be removed from office. This is not a question of criminality. That will be addressed in the judicial realm. Mr. Vigil has forced your hand, by continuing to show up for work.
So, how about it legislators, can we count on you? Readers, please put your two cents in the comment sections. Consider it your own P.S. to this open letter.
A Concerned Constituent