ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Former KRQE News 13 Anchor Dick Knipfing covered New Mexico news for more than 50 years — that includes Pete Domenici’s entire political career.
“Over the years he championed so many New Mexico causes, but national causes, too. He was a national figure. Budget, budget reform, immigration reform, all kinds of issues that were vital not only to the state but the country, too,” Knipfing said.
The two first met when they lived in the same neighborhood in the 1960’s.
“I joked with him when he ran for the Senate in 1972 that I couldn’t vote for him because his daughter Lisa was our babysitter and our little girl loved Lisa. And I said, ‘I’m not going to lose my babysitter and vote for you and send you to Washington,'” Knipfing recalled.
He said Domenici had a way to make things work.
“Pete was great at working with Democrats and getting Democrats to work with him, which is something that doesn’t happen in Washington or New Mexico right now,” Knipfing said.
“Pete was a man of faith. He may have had his failings, but his pastor said at mass tonight that when he saw Pete the last time after administering the sacrament, Pete said to him, ‘Praise be Jesus Christ and the church he gave for the world.'” Knipfing said. “Pretty good recognition where the true power lies.”