Oct 3, 2007

Officials: N.M. Sen. Domenici to Retire

By ANDREW TAYLOR

WASHINGTON (AP) — Sen. Pete Domenici of New Mexico, an influential Republican voice on budget issues for a generation, intends to retire at the end of his term next year for health reasons, party officials said Wednesday.

The 75-year-old, six-term lawmaker plans a formal announcement Thursday in his home state.

Domenici began informing associates late Wednesday he has frontotemporal lobar degeneration, a progressive disease that in some forms can cause dysfunction in the parts of the brain important for organization, decision-making and control of mood and behavior.

One Republican familiar with the senator's plans said Domenici is expected to announce that while he is confident of his ability to serve the remaining 14 months of his current term, he does not want to risk impairment over an additional six years in office.

Domenici would be the fifth Republican senator to decline to seek a new term, giving Democrats an opportunity to expand their narrow majority in the 2008 elections. GOP Sens. John Warner of Virginia, Chuck Hagel of Nebraska, Wayne Allard of Colorado and Larry Craig of Idaho have previously announced plans not to run again.

New Mexico, Virginia and Colorado are seen as highly competitive states, and the Nebraska race could prove tight as well. President Bush carried New Mexico by a single percentage point over Sen. John Kerry in 2004.

A spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Colleagues had expected Domenici to seek a seventh term despite criticism over his possible role in the firing U.S. Attorney David Iglesias. Domenici has acknowledged phoning Iglesias at a time when some Republicans wanted the prosecutor to hasten an investigation of Democrats before the 2006 elections.

A Domenici adviser said health concerns are the main reason for the decision to retire.

Budget issues have dominated Domenici's long Senate career. He was the longtime chairman of the Budget Committee dating to President Reagan's first term. He is currently the top Republican on the Energy Committee.

He was a principal architect of a 1997 balanced budget bill negotiated with then-President Clinton, and has been a major player on national energy legislation. He has supported nuclear power and opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling.

Domenici earned a reputation as an advocate for his state from his perch on the powerful Appropriations Committee, steering money to Energy Department nuclear facilities such as the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

He now is one of the Senate's "Old Bulls," combining affectionate respect and fear to become one of the chamber's more powerful GOP members.

Domenici's health became an issue after he suffered nerve damage in his right arm while playing touch football with his grandchildren on Thanksgiving Day 1999. He underwent surgery in June 2000 to relieve pressure on nerves in his neck.

But the pain persisted and in 2003 he was diagnosed with arthritis in his lower back. The senator began using a low-speed scooter between his office and the Capitol. But the scooter disappeared two years later after a new workout regimen and treatment by arthritis specialists.

Domenici came under investigation by the Senate Ethics Committee this year after a watchdog group accused him of trying to pressure Iglesias to rush a corruption probe against Democrats to sway the 2006 elections. Iglesias says he believes he was dismissed from his job for resisting Domenici and Rep. Heather Wilson, R-N.M., who both say they did not pressure him.

In March, Domenici called the controversy "hell" like he had never experienced in his career.

Domenici was first elected to the Senate in the GOP landslide of 1972. His only serious challenge since came in 1978.

His retirement is expected to spur a scramble among the state's top politicians who have long hoped to succeed him. Among them are Republicans Wilson and Rep. Steve Pearce and Democratic Rep. Tom Udall. Other possible Democratic contenders include Albuquerque Mayor Martin J. Chavez and state Lt. Gov. Diane Denish.

Domenici "is an iconic figure here in New Mexico," said Paul Kennedy, a former state Supreme Court justice and a longtime Republican. "He's probably the most popular politician in its history. He had a great run, and he'll be sorely missed from the delegation."

Domenici is slated to make the announcement at St. Mary's School in Albuquerque at 4 p.m. local time. He attended the school as a youth and his sister Marianella is the principal.

Associated Press writers David Espo, Jennifer Talhelm and Charles Babington contributed to this report.

[Update: Listen to Senator Domenici's announcement as broadcast on KUNM.]

37 comments:

Pinky and The Brain said...

"...frontotemporal lobar degeneration, a progressive disease that in some forms can cause dysfunction in the parts of the brain important for organization, decision-making and control of mood and behavior."

There's the story. And a sad one it is. You will be in my prayers tonight, Senator Domenici.

Anonymous said...

This is a horrible disease because one symptom of it is dementia. It's sometimes called Pick's disease. What a sad way to wind down such a productive life, and how horrible for his family.

Anonymous said...

Those who have had a first-hand encounters with Domenici in the past year have been reporting on his much-diminished mental capacity. His ability perform the duties of office effectively during the next 14 months, much less another term are doubtful. The Iglesias business is undoubtedly his most public demonstration of impaired judgment, but even a brief conversation with him leaves little doubt that he is not all there.

Anonymous said...

What is it?

A progressive dementia occurring in middle life characterised by slowly developing changes in character and social behaviour, or impairment of language, due to degeneration of the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain.

Where does the name come from?

Arnold Pick was the doctor who was the first to describe the disease in 1892.

Other names for the disease

Many doctors now prefer to reserve the name “Pick’s” for just one of the types of changes in the brain tissue (histology) that may be seen with the disease. You may come across several different names which are explained below: Frontotemporal lobar degeneration, frontotemporal dementia, semantic dementia and primary progressive aphasia.

Frontotemporal lobar degeneration

Many doctors now prefer this name for the disease. Patients who would have previously been told they had Pick’s Disease may now be told they have frontotemporal lobar degeneration. The name refers to the parts of the brain that are affected: the frontal and temporal lobes (at the front and side of the brain respectively).

Frontotemporal lobar degeneration can present with three different patterns of symptoms: frontotemporal dementia, semantic dementia or primary progressive aphasia. In frontotemporal dementia the frontal lobes (controlling behaviour, organisation and planning) are affected first, whilst in semantic dementia it is the temporal lobes (controlling language) that are affected first. In primary progressive aphasia, the disease starts in an area at the back of the frontal lobes and front of the temporal lobes.

What are the Symptoms?

Frontotemporal dementia
Personality change is an early feature. The person may lose their inhibitions and become extrovert, or alternatively may become apathetic and withdrawn. They may talk to strangers, make inappropriate remarks in public and be rude or impatient. They may become aggressive which may be quite out of character, and may develop fixed routines. Some people begin to hoard things and become obsessive. Behaviour may be sexually suggestive, though a loss of interest in sexual acts themselves is also common. Often the person with dementia will be unaware of the problems. People may also develop a sweet tooth and overeat leading to gain in weight. Excessive alcohol intake may occur. Spending money and losing cash often causes problems. In the later stages people with the illness may compulsively put objects in their mouths. In the early stages memory is not usually affected. However sometimes difficulties in organisation and concentration may lead to an apparent memory problem. People may be very distractible. Later in the disease a more generalised dementia can develop.


Semantic Dementia
This begins with loss of knowledge about the world, which often presents as problems with language. Although people can still speak fluently they lose the words for certain items and also lose the knowledge of the meaning of the word. For example, someone may not only forget the word “hippopotamus” when shown a picture, but also loses all the knowledge they once had about this (e.g. that it is an African animal that lives in rivers). However, unlike Alzheimer’s disease, memory for day to day events may be good. People may also have difficulty recognising what things are. At later stages, personality is often affected.

Primary Progressive Aphasia
People gradually develop difficulties with their speech (aphasia), which becomes slow and laboured and contains errors. This can be an isolated problem, and personality, memory and understanding may be almost normal for a long period. Eventually other areas do become involved and at a late stage a more generalised dementia becomes apparent.

What is the life span of the disease?

This varies quite a lot between individuals. It may last from 2 to more than 10 years, and a long duration of illness is quite common.

Anonymous said...

I'm no Plutonium Pete fan, but I do wish him well. Right, wrong or indifferent, he's been an enormous influence on the local and national scene. A more astute politician there never has been. The Lab's main benefactor will be missed by those whose economic futures are tied to the Lab. On a national scale however, perhaps it's time for a change.

Anonymous said...

I *knew* it. We have the NNSA with us today because of Domenici's early-onset frontotemporal lobar degeneration (symptoms including poor judgement).

It also explains his "Just get over it!" lecture to LANL staff shortly after Nanos had been run out of town.

Anonymous said...

LANL's prime protector is about to leave the stage.

We are left with Richardson, Udall, and Bingamin. Neither of these gentlemen cares much about the lab. In fact, Richardson and Udall both want draconian budget cuts.

The 'long knifes' are coming out in Washington to carve up what is left of Los Alamos. Game over.

Pinky and The Brain said...

Wilson to seek Domenici's seat

Eric said...

Domenici's retirement speech, just completed, was, as expected, classy.

Anonymous said...

Well, I'm sure glad his retirement speech was classy, because his performance certainly hasn't been. He and that other 'Pete', Nanos, were best buddies. Plutonium Pete "fully supported" UC's Pete. And then after Nanos left the building, Plutonium Pete came up to the Admin Auditorium and told us that we should all "just get over it." I was there; Domenici was a prick that day. Perhaps he was a prick because of his frontotemporal lobar degeneration, but he was a prick nevertheless.

He's been a strong proponent of making LANL a production plutonium pit production facility. I think only a total prick would do that.

I'm no fan of "Plutonium Pete", and I won't miss him one little bit.

Anonymous said...

6:45 could not be more wrong.

Senator Domenici has been the strongest proponent of science in Congress, and perhaps the strongest supporter of science in US government since Thomas Jefferson.

His retirement is a blow to the nation.

Anonymous said...

6:45 pm:

"He's been a strong proponent of making LANL a production plutonium pit production facility. I think only a total prick would do that.

I'm no fan of "Plutonium Pete", and I won't miss him one little bit."

You, and the poster at 8:12 am, are mean spirited, uncouth, rude, and unfeeling people. This is not the time for partisan garbage or personal attacks on such a long and distinguished career. Would your mothers be proud of your comments? I'm glad your own little worlds are so secure that you will never need the unjudgemental kindness and charity of strangers, or wish for their recognition of your accomplishments.

Anonymous said...

8:01 could not be more wrong.

Domenici's retirement is a blow to Bechtel-LANS's plans to make lots of money by building and operating the replacement Rocky Flats plutonium pit fabrication factory.

The loss of Domenici is a loss to Northern New Mexico's pork-flavored gravy train. It is certainly not a loss to the nation. It is a blow to the Republican party, perhaps, but that is most definitely not the same thing as being a loss to the nation.

Anonymous said...

8:01 here.

I am a Democrat, and very happy that the Democrats are likely to gain additional seats in the Senate.

I challenge you to name another supporter of science in Congress, let alone anyone who has been so consistent.

His support of Nanos and NNSA was meant to protect LANL against virtually insurmountable odds, precipitated by scandals attributed to LANL. You may agree or disagree that LANL was really responsible for those scandals or whether any facts really supported the existence of scandals. The perception in DC was that LANL was responsible, and in DC, perception = reality. His support of NNSA and Nanos was a mistake, in hindsight, but that was the best hand he could play with the cards he was dealt at the time.

Anonymous said...

8:46,

Domenici's support of Nanos, as *you* now recognize in hindsight, was as most of *us* knew at the time: a huge mistake. Domenici made the wrong decision at the time. Perhaps his mental condition is what prevented him from seeing the obvious: that support of Nanos was morally and logically wrong.

Perhaps it was his party affiliation. Perhaps Domenici is just another corrupt politician. I doubt that anybody will ever know the real reason that he picked the wrong team to support at that critical time in LANL's history. The only important fact is that he did.

Losing Domenici as the ranking Republican New Mexican Senator provides a long overdue opportunity to change the course of LANL's current path towards becoming another Rocky Flats Plant.

Anonymous said...

8:09

I agree with you, but you're wasting your time... the democrat "party of compassion and tolerance" is only compassionate and tolerant as long as you agree with their point of view.

Gussie Fink-Nottle said...

Ah yes, 9:14. The good old "my {political/religious/ethnic/racial} affiliation is better than yours" argument.

Brilliant.

--Gussie

Anonymous said...

"Domenici's support of Nanos, as *you* now recognize in hindsight, was as most of *us* knew at the time: a huge mistake."

You sure did *not* know that at the time. There was wave after wave of accidents and security issues, and there was a building wave to downsize or close LANL. A show of toughness was necessary to forestall this wave from swamping LANL. Business as usual was going to end, one way or the other. That is a fact, whether you like(d) it or not.

I think you confuse support of science with support of *your* sandbox.

(Thanks for showing me the asterisk *trick*. It sure is *fun*.)

Doug said...

Quite a few of us did know, 9:36, and we left the lab as a result. Maybe you weren't one of them, but I was. When it comes right down to it, those who chose to believe that Nanos's actions were correct and proper back then are in the distinct minority.

--Doug Roberts
LANL, Retired, 2005.

Anonymous said...

9:14 pm:

8:09 here. Thanks for your support, but like I said, not the time for partisan garbage.

Anonymous said...

In hindsight, Mike's figure of 20% reductions in staffing at LANL now look too optimistic. Within three years, I suspect LANL is going to be about half the size of today.

St. Pete was our last political supporter and until this last year he had the power to really help us. He kept coming to LANL's aid year after year. The FY08 budget disaster is just a small taste of what the "post-Pete" era will probably be like for LANL.

No one is left in either party that cares much about LANL's future. Even our local NM politicians seem ready to abandon us.

Dark days, indeed, have descended upon this place.

Anonymous said...

""Domenici's support of Nanos, as *you* now recognize in hindsight, was as most of *us* knew at the time: a huge mistake."

You sure did *not* know that at the time. There was wave after wave of accidents and security issues, and there was a building wave to downsize or close LANL. A show of toughness was necessary to forestall this wave from swamping LANL. Business as usual was going to end, one way or the other. That is a fact, whether you like(d) it or not.

I think you confuse support of science with support of *your* sandbox.

(Thanks for showing me the asterisk *trick*. It sure is *fun*.)

10/4/07 9:36 PM"

Sorry 9:36pm I do not buy it. If you saw the recent congressional hearings they always use the standown againts LANL. The most basic thing that Nanos did that hurt us was that he did not say to congress the actual facts.
The so called wave after wave of security incidents as you say was nothing of the sort. He had the the safety record wrong and he had the security record wrong. A week after the shutdown he knew he was wrong but said nothing and he should be in jail now for it. I have personally talked with Nanos and my feeling is that he was either he has a narrissistic personality disorder or was physcopath. He really hurt LANL and the nation. I would also note that the he made LANL far less safe and far less secure. The reason? It was clear that he did not believe a word of what he was saying. So guess what?
no one took anything he said seriously, no one trusted any rule, no one believed in anything
anymore and they became more cynical and apathetic. So things got worse and will get worse.
Very few people will ever trust anying management has to say now because of Nanos. Once trust is lost it is almost impossible to get it back. It is hard to say but in some ways it would be better to close down LANL and start completely from anew due to the damage that Nanos caused. However any organization that is sick enough to allow someone like Nanos in the first place was already doomed.

"The newspaper reader says: this party will ruin itself if it makes errors like this. My higher politics says: a party which makes errors like this is already finished - it is no longer secure in its instincts."

Nietzshche

Anonymous said...

The reality is that "St. Pete" was the great enabler. By continuing to bail out LANL year after year, there was never any incentive for DOE/UC/LANL management to fix any of the endemic problems, so they just got worse every year. Now the place is unsustainable and we are seeing the results of the end of the gravy train.

One or two Republican politicians are hysterically crying that to shut down LANL would be a death blow to the nation's security. The reality is that LANL is almost completely redundant, except for the pit fabrication capabilities. LANL-philes might not like to admit it, but our sister nuclear weapons lab out in California can easily fill whatever role LANL has laid claim to.

Anonymous said...

From LiveScience.com.....

Hillary Clinton Promises Science-Friendly White House

By Robert Roy Britt, LiveScience Managing Editor

04 October 2007

Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton today accused the Bush Administration of conducting a "war on science" and vowed to promote scientific discovery in research, medicine and space exploration if elected.

"For six and half years under this president, it's been open season on open inquiry," Clinton said in a wide-ranging science and technology position paper. "And by ignoring or manipulating science, the Bush administration is letting our economic competitors get an edge in the global economy."

Firmly pushing one hot button in particular, Clinton promised to sign an Executive Order that would rescind President Bush's ban on federal funding for new lines of embryonic stem cells used in research.

Among other promises:

* Establish a $50 billion Strategic Energy Fund to invest in technologies to promote conservation, combat global warming and reduce dependence on foreign oil.
* Speed the development of a vehicle to replace the aging space shuttle fleet, and "fully fund NASA's Earth Sciences program and initiate a Space-based Climate Change Initiative" to better study global warming.
* Increase the budget of the National Institutes of Health by 50 percent over 5 years.
* Direct all federal department and agency heads to safeguard against political pressure on scientific issues.
* Re-establish the position of Assistant to the President for Science and Technology.
* Ban political appointees from unduly interfering with scientific conclusions and publications.

President Bush has been routinely criticized by environmental groups, and even industry leaders, for being slow to accept the scientific consensus that global warming is real and at least partly caused by human activity. His administration has also been accused by scientists of stifling research.

The competition

Several other leading candidates have posted somewhat less lengthy position statements on their Web sites regarding energy policy and health care.

Democratic Sen. Joe Biden sets specific numeric goals, such as reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050 by imposing a cap and trade system, and he would "require that at least 20 percent of the country's electricity comes from clean, renewable sources."

Democrat John Edwards has a detailed platform for on "innovation," promising to "increase spending on basic research at the National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health and lift stifling research restrictions." He would also "create the New Energy Economy Fund to invest in clean, renewable energies."

Edwards also would work to depoliticize science and "eliminate political litmus tests for government scientists" and prohibit political appointees from overriding agencies' scientific findings "unless the chief White House science advisor concludes they are erroneous."

Democratic Sen. Barack Obama calls for a "new national energy policy focused on improvements in technology, investments in renewable fuels" but does not get specific.

Republican candidate Mitt Romney: "In technology, we as a country already invest an enormous amount—for instance, in defense technology, space technology, health—but we also need to invest in some of the emerging technologies that are important at a basic science level such as fuel cell technology, power generation, materials science, automotive technology."

Sputnik connection

Clinton's statement was released purposely on the 50th anniversary of the Soviet launch of Sputnik, the first space satellite, which spurred a revolution in American innovation.

Clinton aims for a space exploration program "that involves robust human spaceflight to complete the Space Station and later human missions, expanded robotic spaceflight probes of our solar system leading to future human exploration" by, in part, capitalizing on the expertise of the shuttle program workforce and preventing the sort of "brain drain" she says occurred between the Apollo era and shuttle missions.

"I believe we have to change course—and I know America is ready," Clinton said. "What America achieved after Sputnik is a symbol of what America can do now as we confront a new global economy, new environmental challenges, and the promise of new discoveries in medicine. America led in the 20th century—and with new policies and a renewed commitment to scientific integrity and innovation, America is ready to lead in the 21st."

Anonymous said...

7:09 am:

And this has what, exactly, to do with LANL, and NNSA's plans to turn it into a plutonium foundry? From Hillary's hot-button list included in your comment:

"Among other promises:

* Establish a $50 billion Strategic Energy Fund to invest in technologies to promote conservation, combat global warming and reduce dependence on foreign oil.
* Speed the development of a vehicle to replace the aging space shuttle fleet, and "fully fund NASA's Earth Sciences program and initiate a Space-based Climate Change Initiative" to better study global warming.
* Increase the budget of the National Institutes of Health by 50 percent over 5 years.
* Direct all federal department and agency heads to safeguard against political pressure on scientific issues.
* Re-establish the position of Assistant to the President for Science and Technology.
* Ban political appointees from unduly interfering with scientific conclusions and publications."
"

LANL doesn't do any of these things.

Anonymous said...

An analytical prediction of what this will mean in terms of LANL and budget:

- Given that Pete is still in office for quite a few more months, assuming his health holds, and given that the Senate still operates as much more of a congenial old-boy network than the house, and give the truly tragic nature of his illness, I wouldn't be surprised to see the Senate push the House to come together soon on a DOE/NNSA 08 funding package that gives Pete what he wants, to let him go out on a high note.

- The knives will come out in 09, probably making this year's proposed cuts look like the good old days. Maybe up to 60% of the LANL budget, particularly as a previous poster pointed out, LANL isn't (still won't) doing much work on what are likely to be the new national science priorities.

- In addition to a major cut in 09, look for a push to split the lab into "science" and "production plant" components. Pete has been a tireless advocate of keeping it together, for sound reasons. Nevertheless, the split will happen and it will make the 09 budget cuts much easier --- massive cuts on the science side (and no wasted effort in trying to turn unfunded physicists into industrial engineerrs); perhaps flat or increased funding on the plant side. By splitting the two entities, the endless arguments over whether the Lab should be a production site, and how to fit production missions of all stripes into a science organization, are over. And the split eliminates one of DOE/NNSA's biggest complaints about LANL ---production plant $$ used to subsidize "science" (which isn't a 4-letter word, but appears to be on the other side of the Potomac).

- Y12 West

Anonymous said...

Wow. Whether you agree with his policy stands or not, I fail to see how some could assume to know another's intentions. Pete did what he thought was best. I fully agree with his "get over it" statement. In the real world (which starts right about at the front gate) people really don't give a rat's behind about how important you think you are. It's results that count. The most earth shattering results at LANL in the last five years all revolve around security lapses. Stop telling the world how bad others are being to you and produce. Otherwise, just leave quietly.

Anonymous said...

"The most earth shattering results at LANL in the last five years all revolve around security lapses."

Disagree, 10:45. The most 'earth shattering results at LANL' recently have all revolved around massive management malfeasance. The single most 'shattering' event was when Nanos claimed that his shutdown was based on a 'massive' security infraction. He was wrong, and his shutdown had an immediate cost of hundreds of millions of dollars, and untold longer term costs.

Domenici's backing of Nanos leads me to suspect your characterization of his pristine motivations is not accurate.

As far as your suggestion that people who see problems at LANL should just leave quietly: no thanks, not going to happen.

Anonymous said...

Poster 9:09 AM nails it.

By FY'09 there will be a move to split LANL into a production entity and a science entity. Congress will then put minimal amounts of money into the pit factory (just enough to keep it up and running), and begin to financially starve the science side out of existence.

Most of the important weapons science will be transferred to LLNL by our executive team of LANS/LLNS LLC. This will be done under the name of "integration", which is exactly what the LLCs promised to NNSA during their sales pitch to win the LLC bids.

If you have any means at all to escape from LANL during the next year, consider using them. As hard as it might be to comprehend, things will only get worse at LANL over the next few years.

You may survive the upcoming RIF, but you won't want to be around here much longer to savor the "victory". Further layoffs will occur during each of the next few years, as LANL is downsized from a workforce of 12,000 back to a pre '95 size of about 6,000 workers. Most of these employees will be in management, support, or cleanup operations.

LANL is becoming a very sad place in which to do science, and the constant low morale is taking it's toll on the lives of many staff members. Carefully consider whether you really want to spend the next few years of your working life riding this broken pony into the ground.

Anonymous said...

SENATE: Wilson in, Udall out in race to replace Domenici (10/05/2007) - Alex Kaplun, E&ENews PM reporter

Less that 24 hours after Sen. Pete Domenici (R-N.M.) formally announced his retirement, the field of potential successors began to shake out today as one prominent Republican entered the race and two well-known Democrats said that they would not run.

Rep. Heather Wilson (R-N.M.) is expected to announce later today that she will enter the race. Wilson is poised to become the Republican front-runner for the nomination, as observers wait to see if Rep. Steve Pearce (R-N.M.) will run against her.

Wilson is already well known in the state after weathering several highly competitive and costly Democratic challenges in recent years, including winning by just over 800 votes in 2006. Wilson is a senior member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

Another member of the New Mexico delegation announced today he would not run for the Senate seat. Rep. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) said in a statement he does not plan to seek the Democratic nomination, citing his desire to remain a member of the powerful House Appropriations Committee.

"As I continue to gain in seniority in the House, assume more of a leadership role, assert my authority on the Appropriations Committee and pass significant legislation like my bill to promote renewable energy, I am in the right place to serve New Mexico and the country," Udall said.

And Gov. Bill Richardson (D) again said he has no intention to drop out of the presidential race to run for the Senate and will not seek the seat even if he was to lose early next year in the primaries, according to the Associated Press.

"I am not running for the Senate. I'm running for president," Richardson told the AP.

Several other Democratic candidates are still eyeing the race, including Lt. Gov. Diane Denish (D), Albuquerque Mayor Martin Chavez and former state Attorney General Patricia Madrid, who lost to Wilson in 2006.

Anonymous said...

Well, we now know that Wilson will be running for the GOP side. My guess is Martin Chavez will attempt a run for the Democrats. Patricia Madrid has no chance, given her pathetic campaigning abilities shown against Wilson for '06.

Thank God that Udall isn't going to run for Senate. He's done enough damage to Northern New Mexico as it is. I hope a good Democratic challenger knocks him out of his Congressional seat for '08. This man is bad for New Mexicans!

Richardson is now on record as saying he won't run for Senate, but we all know that Bill is a big, fat liar. If he falters at the Presidential primaries, he'll quickly change his mind and run for the Senate. Don't trust a single word this man says. He has no honor.

Anonymous said...

Actually, Bill Richardson won't be running for the Senate if his Presidential campaign falters. He's in communications with Hillary's people hoping to make it on as the VP for the '08 ticket.

Hillary may use him to bring in the Hispanic vote. Richardson is also on good speaking terms with the Clintonistas, which can't be said for most of the other Democratic candidates in the running.

Anonymous said...

5:15 PM: (On Richardson)

"Hillary may use him to bring in the Hispanic vote."

Don't count on it. In case you haven't noticed, Rchardson isn't carrying the Hispanic vote where he is running, just the ulta-liberal, "bring the troops out now" vote. There just isn't much Hispanic vote in the east and midwest. Besides, Hispanics would actually have to pay attention to understand that "Richardson" is an Hispanic person. Not likely.

Pinky and The Brain said...

Huh?

Anyway, another question. Richardson gets to appoint Domenici's replacement if he can't finish his term, right? Any idea who that might be?

Anonymous said...

The GOP will do a 'Strom Thurmond' with St. Pete. His staff will do much of the work for him from this point onward. From what I've heard, he is quickly losing his cognitive capabilities. It's very sad.

What Pete won't be able to do from this point onward is help with the difficult and personal arm-twisting required to help keep LANL's budget from tanking, and Sen. Bingamin, could really care less about LANL.

We are screwed, gentlemen. Start shopping for lots of KY Jelly.

Anonymous said...

Guv Bill will be eyeing this seat before Feb 12, 2008. Hillary will inform him that he WON'T be her pick for VP and it would be in the party's best interest for him to secure the open NM senate seat. Guv Bill will be the good little dem soldier and do what he is told with the hope of something bigger later on.

Anonymous said...

St. Pete has been a strong supporter or LANL since he became a Senator way back 1972. That he is now leaving power should give those still working at LANL some cause for major concern.

In the next few years we are likely to witness just how important this man was to keeping the good paying jobs alive at LANL.