Unchained Democrats tackle climate change, shun marijuana
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) -- Legislators are hammering out agreements to increase annual spending on public school education by a half-billion dollars after consummating New Mexico's version of a "Green New Deal" that aims for carbon-free electricity production within a generation.
The consequences of sweeping Democratic midterm election victories in New Mexico were coming into focus in the final full day of the state's annual legislative session on Friday.
Two successive annual budget surpluses in excess of $1 billion are allowing the Legislature to plot a major economic stimulus package and respond to a judge's order to boost resources to public education.
As Democrats push through the state's first minimum wage increase in a decade, their own ideological divides have sidelined efforts to legalize recreational marijuana and remove a dormant criminal ban on abortion.