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Governor in For a Rude Awakening

Governor Richardson has spent a year on the campaign trail only to return a week before the 30 day legislative session with big plans (subscription):

We already know the lawmakers will be asked to tackle health care and ethics reform.

There’s a plan to change how the state funds public education.

Granting gay and lesbian couples the same rights as married, heterosexual ones, is a familiar and controversial issue likely to return to the table.

By the way, legislators also must craft a multibillion-dollar state budget and might divvy up more than $300 million for brick-and-mortar projects around the state that are better known as pork.

That’s just the big stuff; hundreds of additional issues, with legislators pushing their own priorities, will pile up as everyone tries to address a year’s worth of problems and wishes in one month’s time.

My prediction is that the lame duck Governor is going to make very little headway during this session on that massive health care proposal. Then, he is going to be faced with calling folks into special session or aligning himself with a presidential campaign and going back out on the trail to try and win the Hispanic vote. My guess is that latter. With all of the legislators up for re-election, a special session would not be well-received.