Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Some Tributes to the Speaker

Kind words for the late House Speaker Ben Lujan began pouring in from various politicos who knew and worked with him.

Here's what I've seen so far:

Ben Lujan was a giant in New Mexico politics and government. He will go down in history as nm greatest speaker. His legislative contributions were far reaching as he authored major legislation on health care education roads and taxes. He singlehandedly ushered the end of the onerous food tax and lowered taxes for every New Mexican.
 I spoke to the Speaker on Thursday and Barbara and I were planning to visit him and Carmen at his home in Pojoaque today. Like a true gladiator he was fighting this disease with courage and conviction He made lives better for every New Mexican and we will miss him. -Governor Bill Richardson
Former Gov. Bill Richardson

Last night a great friend and an individual that I respect immensely passed away. Speaker Ben Lujan was a giant in New Mexico politics, and a fighter for New Mexico's families. He fought for the poor, elderly, and underprivileged. He worked tirelessly for veterans, affordable healthcare, worker rights, high wage jobs for New Mexicans and so many more great endeavors. He will go down the in history books as one of New Mexico’s best Speakers.
The entire State of New Mexico has benefited from his strong leadership. His big smile and calming leadership will be missed in New Mexico's roundhouse. We in the Democratic Party of New Mexico mourn the loss of the Speaker.
I mourn alongside the Lujan family in this tough time. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Carmen, Congressman Ben Ray Lujan Jr, and the rest of the Lujan family.
State Democratic Party Chairman Javier Gonzales

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Lujan family. We offer our sincere condolences to all who had the pleasure of calling Speaker Lujan a family member, a friend and a colleague. His decades of service to New Mexico and the legacy of leadership he left behind will long be remembered across our state.
State Republican Party Chairman John Billingsly

Our state lost a great leader, and a great friend, yesterday with the passing of Speaker Ben Luján. For over four decades, Ben was a tireless advocate for the people of New Mexico. Ben was a dedicated public servant, and even a devastating illness could not deter him from the job he had committed to do. He remained steadfast in his service to the people of our state, and he was an inspiration to all who knew him.  
Ben came of age in the Great Depression. He knew poverty and hard times first hand. He never forgot where he came from, and he was always a champion for the less fortunate among us. He was a tenacious fighter for education, for workers, for Native Americans, and for health care. His principles illuminated his life, and brightened the lives of all who knew him. 
Ben once said, 'Let us make our time on Earth… worthwhile, and do what’s right, and make a difference for the children, our working families, and our elderly.' He lived up to that challenge throughout his life, and he leaves behind a remarkable legacy of service to New Mexico. I was proud to call Ben Luján my colleague and my friend. Jill and I will miss Ben. We extend our deepest condolences to Carmen, and to Shirley, Jackie, Jerome, and Congressman Ben Ray Luján, and all the Luján family. 
U.S. Sen. Tom Udall

The entire Lujan family, including my colleague Ben Ray Lujan, are in my thoughts and prayers today. Speaker Ben Lujan will live on through his decades of service to New Mexico.

U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce

And I've some tweets from legislators.

What an honor to learn the ropes in the state House from Speaker Ben Lujan. Our familys thoughts and prayers go out to Carmen.
Sen. Peter Wirth, D-Santa Fe

Speaker Lujan was a true champion for New Mexico, his leadership & policy legacy will continue to help our state decades 
Sen. Tim Keller, D-Albuquerque

I hope we take time for a thought or prayer for the Lujan family. The Speaker's passing is a huge loss; he'll be greatly missed.
Rep. Brian Egolf, D-Santa Fe

What a legacy he left. I was proud to serve with Speaker Lujan and send my love to the family.
Sen. Dede Feldman, D-Albuquerque

UPDATE: 11:07 am I corrected my demotion of Tom Udall to U.S. Rep. He indeed is a senator. Thanks C.R. for alerting me. I also added the tweet by Rep. Egolf. (And Sen. Feldman too)