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Gov’s prosecutorial roots surface

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Martinez wants DNA samples for all felony arrests

By Hal Rhodes

During the recent campaign, New Mexicans heard a great deal from their Republican and Democratic gubernatorial candidates, Susana Martinez and Diane Denish, about the proposals they would submit to the 2011 legislature for dealing with the state’s wickedly unbalanced budget.
Those proposals, with variations on themes, boiled down to promises neither to hike taxes nor to cut spending on education and Medicaid. Hardly anyone versed in the realities of New Mexico’s budget woes considered the candidates’ budget balancing notions in the least plausible.  
So upon taking office last week, media types and others wondered if the new governor would reveal the balanced budget alchemy behind her claim that there was a realistic way for the upcoming legislature to match necessary expenditures to anticipated revenues without raising taxes or cutting spending on the two programs, education and Medicaid, that constitute the largest share of that budget.
Unable or unwilling to answer such questions, Gov. Martinez cleverly changed the subject by making it known that she wants the upcoming legislature to broaden the state’s law mandating DNA sampling of adults arrested for violent felony offenses, such as murder, armed robbery, and sex crimes, including rape.


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