Gov. Martinez reacts to primary results

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Governor Susana Martinez is meeting with her supporters in Albuquerque’s South Valley.

Martinez had this to say to supporters Tuesday.

Let’s hear it for John Sanchez! He has been a great Lieutenant Governor – a strong ally in moving New Mexico forward.

It feels so great to be back in the South Valley tonight at a small New Mexico business and to see so many familiar faces.

Many of you stood by my side nearly four years ago.

I was just a little-known District Attorney from Doña Ana County. No one gave us much of a shot of winning.

But I told you that if you supported me, we could win in November that we could take our state back. And we did because of your help. Because you believed in me and, more importantly, because we believed in the best of New Mexico.

There are always nay-sayers – always those who say it can’t be done.

And when we confronted the largest deficit in state history, in the middle of a national recession, and while facing massive, federal budget cuts, many said there was no way to balance the budget without raising taxes –no way a Republican governor could come together with a Democrat legislature.

But we proved them wrong.

We cut the waste, sold the jet and balanced the budget without raising taxes.

And we did it working across party lines.

As elected officials, we must remember that it’s not about us – not about our political parties.

It’s about improving the lives of those we serve.

And New Mexicans deserve an honest government that lives within its means – that provides a hand-up to those who are struggling and helps children chase their dreams, that supports small businesses, like this one, grow and provide more jobs to New Mexicans.

Helping grow local small businesses is why I refused to raise taxes. And we didn’t. Instead, we cut taxes. Not once. Not twice. We cut taxes 24 times.

And the reason is because we must help our small businesses grow.

For decades, New Mexico’s economy has relied too heavily on federal spending.

What that means is when we have federal budget cuts, when Washington, D.C., is a partisan mess, our families in New Mexico pay the price.

With all the cuts, with all the partisanship, one thing is clear: New Mexico can no longer put our economic fate in the hands of Washington politicians.

Don’t get me wrong: I will always fight for our labs and bases. But we must also fight to create an economy as diverse as our people.

And we do that by growing small businesses, by ensuring they get a fair shot and by leveling the playing field with surrounding states.

That’s why we closed loopholes that benefitted out-of-state corporations and passed bipartisan tax cuts that level the playing field with surrounding states.

I believe New Mexicans can compete with anyone – and we’ve proved it.

New Mexico went from 38th in export growth to number one in the nation. We’re now able to go toe-to-toe with other states to attract new companies, and we are better able to help our local businesses grow.

We’ve been dependent on federal spending for decades and diversifying our economy is going to take time. It’s going to take courage to enact the tough reforms that are necessary.

But I know we can do it. And I’m going to put my trust in New Mexico small businesses – not Washingtonpoliticians. And I believe everything starts with a high-quality education.

That’s why I’ve fought so hard for education reform.

We need an education system that tells kids they can be anything, that supports them as they chase their dreams and helps pick them up when they struggle.

We don’t need an education system, or a governor, that lowers standards, that tells kids they are incapable of learning to read by the third grade.

I believe we must encourage kids to reach for the sky and support them as they chase their dreams.

Education must be about kids achieving their goals – not about satisfying special interests.

That’s why I’ve fought so hard for reforms. And they’re working.

Graduation rates are up.

Reading scores are up.

I believe every child can learn, regardless of race or circumstance, and we’re proving that to be true.

We’re closing the achievement gap. Our Hispanic students now lead the nation in Advanced Placement tests.

We’ve made great progress. But we have more work to do.

Change is never easy.

And what tonight’s results make clear what this race is really all about: The past versus the future – moving forward or taking our state backward.

Do we want a governor who is willing to lead, willing to shake things up, who truly believes the best days are ahead of us?

Or do we want a governor who believes that our best days are behind us – that we should turn back the clock?

My friends, I don’t go along to get along. You know that. I fight every day for what I believe in.

And I believe tomorrow will be better than today.

Do we go back to the days of my predecessor? Or do we continue moving New Mexico forward?

I am often asked, What motivates me? What drives me?

As the first elected Hispanic female governor in the history of our nation, little girls often come up to me in the grocery store or in the mall.

They look and they point and when they get the courage to come up, they ask, “Are you Susana?” And they run up and give me a hug.

I wonder: how do you know who I am? But they do. And these are little girls. It is at moments like these when I’m reminded that we each pave a path, and for me, it is about paving a path for those little girls to follow.

It’s about providing a bright future for every child.

They deserve a New Mexico where anything is possible, where schools are preparing them for a limitless future, where businesses flourish and provide good-paying jobs, and where New Mexico is a shining example of what is possible.

That’s the New Mexico I believe in – that’s the New Mexico we’re fighting for.

And, my friends, we are just getting started.

Thank you and God Bless New Mexico!

Of course the governor has a huge money advantage over Gary King. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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