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Here We Go Again

There is a right way and a wrong way to do things. When it comes to passing laws, that right way is to introduce a bill at the legislative level and let those for and against a particular bill make their case. Then, if the bill gets passed, it is up to the Governor to sign or veto it. Pretty simple to understand, right?

Then someone please explain to me why Governor Richardson and his appointees continue to struggle with this relatively easy concept?

In the absence of state legislation, New Mexico officials will continue to try to work with other Western Climate Initiative members to flesh out details of the cap-and-trade system they still hope to pursue, said Sarah Cottrell, Gov. Bill Richardson’s energy and environment adviser.

The state will also look at other steps that can be taken administratively, without the need for legislation, Cottrell said.

This administration, more than any other, has repeatedly tried to undermine the legislative process when they have been unhappy with the outcome of a particular bill. The bill in question HB653: Mandates Green House Gas Reductions, was widely considered “a Governor’s bill” which makes this maneuver even worse.

This is not the first time this administrative slight of hand has occurred, and I’ve given an example before of why this should give everyone pause regardless of whether you support or oppose the bill in question. That example is worth repeating again here:

Before the environmentalists among you leave comments that support the Governor’s mandate over the constitutional process we still have for making laws. Let me put this in another context for you. Let’s take an issue like abortion that pretty evenly divides the population. Should a pro-life Governor be able to appoint a regulatory body to regulate abortion?

How supportive would those who are pro-choice react if this body some evening at midnight decided to ban abortion throughout the state? Would you be okay with the pro-life Governor’s edict that:

“The Ban Abortions Program is a key part of our state’s effort to reduce the murder of the unborn to avoid the worst effects of a misguided planet,” said Governor Conservative. “Today’s decision by the Life Improvement Board means New Mexico can implement the most stringent standards for protecting the sanctity of life in the country. New Mexico is again taking action, when Washington won’t.”

Like I said, it’s a slippery slope.

It’s still a slippery slope.