In his letter to Secretary of State Diana Duran, Harden recommended that the governing bodies in the counties in his Senate District -- Curry, Quay, Harding, Union, Colfax, Taos and San Miguel counties -- recommend the name of Pat Woods, who won the Republican primary for Senate in June. Woods is unopposed in the general election.
“It has been my honor to serve the people of New Mexico and the district,” Harden said in a news release. “I believe Sen.-elect Woods values are consistent with the views of the constituents in the district and I know he will be successful.”
Gov. Susana Martinez makes the actual appointment of the person to fill out the rest of Harden's term, which ends at the end of the year. Martinez was a vocal -- and financial -- supporter of Woods' opponent Angie Spears in that heated primary.
Harden was appointed to the New Mexico Senate in 2002 after then Sen. Pat Lyons was elected as state Land Commissioner. He won re-election in 2004 and 2008. Prior to his time in the Legislature, Harden served in Gov. Gary Johnson’s administration as Secretary of Labor. (The Labor Department's name later was changed, for reasons I still don't understand to the Department of Workforce Solutions.)