U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich Speaks with the Valley Daily Post in Española

Senator Heinrich sits for an interview with the Valley Daily Post on Thursday, July 2. Valley Daily Post image

U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich Speaks with the Valley Daily Post in Española

By Robert A. Naranjo

ESPAÑOLA – U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., was in Española , Thursday, July 2nd right before the 4th of July holiday weekend. The Senator took the time to sit down at the El Paragua Restaurant and answer questions with the Valley Daily Post. The session was captured on video and segments of that video with the Senator’s responses appear here in this issue of the Valley Daily Post. 

Senator Heinrich was in a whirlwind tour of the area while visiting Santa Clara Canyon, Puye Cliff Dwellings, Santa Fe Indian School, Bandelier National Monument and then to Española where he met with the Valley Daily Post for a sit down interview.  Immediately afterward, he took to the airwaves at Española ’s long-time radio station, KDCE that now reaches a world wide listening audience at www.kdceradio.com. The Senator was interviewed by station owner, Richard L. Garcia, a New Mexico Broadcast Association (NMBA) Hall of Famer who has hosted local, state, and national elected officials at KDCE.

Senator Heinrich was candid, thoughtful and intelligent with his comments and answers to questions posed by the Valley Daily Post.  He exhibited respect and admiration for the area’s Pueblo and Hispanic history and culture. Asked to comment on Senate Resolution 246 recognizing Hispanic culture and history in the United States, the Senator stated, in part, “Our history is who we are in New Mexico,” And he added, “We have such an amazing history and…we need to remember that and we need to preserve that history. We need to make it part of all of us.”

When asked to comment on his visit to Santa Clara Pueblo, the Senator said he visited the Upper Canyon. In the video, watch and listen closely to the Senator’s response to work being done in the Santa Clara Canyon. He said it has a lot of memories to many people. And, he’s pleased to see government entities working together to help restore the Canyon and that there should be more of this cooperative effort in similar emergencies by government entities. The Senator worked to secure $400,000 of federal funding for prevention of wild fire in the Santa Clara Canyon through thinning of trees and controlled burning on mesa tops.  He also commented on visiting the Puye Cliff Dwellings and its popularity as a visitor destination and said it, too, is a part of New Mexico’s rich history.

Senator Heinrich goes to comment on the Sportsmen Package, key legislation in the Senate for hunters and fishermen. It aims to preserve the right to hunt and fish on public lands by sportsmen that will not be impeded.  The Senator noted how important hunting and fishing activities are to New Mexico with more than 60,000 jobs created in the state in the sportsmen industry and a sizeable economic impact as well.

Senator Heinrich goes on to answer questions or requests to comment on his visits Santa Fe Indian School and Bandelier National Monument. (See related story in Valley Daily Post.)  Additionally, the Senator commented on the recent trade agreement and trade agreements in general. The current trade agreement was fast-tracked by the President and Congress with bi-partisan support.  He had thoughtful answers to a question on what he attributed the drop in the national unemployment to. It is now at a little over five percent.  Not dismissing the low unemployment rate, the Senator said better-paying jobs is what the country needs so that families can cover, for example, their mortgages and pay off their homes to enjoy retirement.  He spoke of when his mother worked in the auto industry when it was the mainstay for the middle class. He added that those jobs are now largely gone.

Finally, the Senator was asked to comment on health care.  The Affordable Care Act was buoyed by a recent Supreme Court decision that did not strike it down. He said it’s time to see what facets of it are working and move forward with it. It’s time to end the rancor and partisan opposition based on politics and said the Supreme Court decision helped make the Affordable Health Care Act less of a political football and more of what its intent was – health care for everyone in the country.  The Senator said that the Act did get health insurance to many who had none at all before.

The Valley Daily Post hopes you liked the interview with Senator Heinrich and came away better informed about him. We will endeavor to continue to bring you similar reporting using video in an effort to get facts and information directly from the source.

Thank you for taking the time to read and/or view the Valley Daily Post.