Friday, January 16, 2009


Lorene Mills' Report from Santa Fe television this weeks features an in-depth interview with Senate President pro-tem Tim Jennings, D-Roswell, who is fighting to hold on to his leadership position.

Senate Democrats -- angry with him for helping Republican Sen. Leonard Lee Rawson in the general election -- nominated Sen. Carlos Cisneros, D-Taos for the pro-tem job.

From the transcript of the show, here's what Jennings said about the incident. You'll notice he also touches on his past clashes with Gov. Bill Richardson:

You know the Senate has been through a lot lately and I with
Sen. Aragon’s conviction or plea agreement you know there are some things out there that I think cast a shadow on the Senate and about its actions and the people in it. ... Sen. Rawson was accused and some of the things were out there said implicated that he was dishonest.

Well, anybody who has been here knows Sen. Rawson worked very hard for his constituency; he worked very hard for the people of the state. He was one of the people that is here early in the morning and he was here and he read the bills, he was probably knitpicky, when he was on Finance he was a very astute individual and he was really in tune with little details. He had a good memory and so you might call him a knit picker or a jerk or something like that I might agree with you. But to say that he was dishonest was very, very far from the truth in my opinion.

... I thought was something I needed to stand up as a leader of the Senate to say no, this member is honest. I consider him to be honest and I do and I still to this day would maintain I believe he is an honest individual. And if I see something that is wrong, you know you try to correct it and the truth is something to me that in politics is something that every political official must have and must have the ability to always speak the truth. And if you see something that is wrong, you should right it.

You should say something about it and then you shouldn’t be punished for speaking the truth and that’s probably where I would probably come into a great deal of conflict with this governor because if you dare to disagree or have an opinion different than his, he tends to keep track and get even, as he has with the Senate. And I don’t support that. I don’t think it’s wrong in this body to have different ideas. I think this is the place that should celebrate different ideas.

Here's a schedule for the show
* Sunday January 18, 6:00 a.m. for Albuquerque and Santa Fe and all of Northern New Mexico, on Channel 5, KNME-TV, the PBS station in Albuquerque.

* Sunday January 18, 11:00 a.m. for Las Cruces and the Southern part of the State, on KRWG-TV, the PBS station in Las Cruces.

*Saturday January 17, 6:00 p.m. for the entire East side of the state, on Channel 3, KENW-TV, the PBS station in Portales.

* Listeners in Santa Fe, Albuquerque and other locales can hear the Jennings interview on the radio 9:30 a.m. on Monday, January 19 on KANW-FM, 89.1 FM.