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NM House Of Representatives Passes 100th Bill

Milestone Highlights Washington-Style Gridlock Promoted By Senate Boss Michael Sanchez

Santa Fe, NM The New Mexico House of Representatives passed its 100th bill on Tuesday
night, drawing a sharp contrast with the state Senate by passing more legislation by nearly 2-1.
The milestone also puts a spotlight on the Senate boss Michael Sanchez, who has promoted
Washington-style gridlock by stonewalling legislation that a vast majority of New Mexicans
The people sent us to Santa Fe to get work done, and the House of Representatives is
delivering, said Rep. Nate Gentry, the House Majority Floor Leader. While this is good news
for New Mexicos families, it also highlights the uphill battle these bills face in Senate, where
only one man gets to say which legislation will ever see the light of day.
Gentry added, We hope Senate Leader Michael Sanchez proves us wrong, and allows bills like
ending social promotion to see a floor vote.
Out of the 100 bills, 99 passed on a bipartisan vote; 75 passed unanimously. The Senate has
passed only 57 bills.
Several of the House priorities, such as ending social promotion and repealing the dangerous
practice of giving drivers licenses to illegal immigrants, have the support of an overwhelming
majority of New Mexicans. However, Sanchez has made it crystal-clear that he doesnt want the
bills to reach a floor vote and tried stalling them by waiting more than two weeks to introduce
them to a committee. Even worse, he referred the bills to three committee assignments.
As Republicans and Democrats in the House work together to pass legislation that puts our
families first, it is a shame that Sen. Michael Sanchez is choosing Washington-style gridlock to
hold up our reforms, Gentry said.
Promoting gridlock is nothing new for Sanchez. He delayed the confirmation of Education
Secretary Hanna Skandera for four years. He even admitted to one newspaper that he stalled the
confirmation because, I've known what the votes were for four years.
Gentry sent a letter to Sanchez on Monday urging him to stop playing political games with
certain pieces of legislation just because he may not agree with them. Sanchez responded to the
letter, but failed to address why he let bills like social promotion and drivers licenses languish
for weeks.
According to recent polling, 67 percent of New Mexicans believe we must end social promotion;
70 percent of New Mexicans believe we must repeal the dangerous law that gives drivers
licenses to illegal immigrants. With 16 days to go in the legislative session, it is unclear if any
action will be taken.