New Mexico

MLG relaxes grocery store orders after report of statewide ‘breadline’ protests goes viral

On Wednesday, after the Piñon Post exclusively reported on a statewide protest against Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s breadlines at grocery stores due to a 75-person capacity limit, the Governor has loosened the restriction to 25% capacity at grocery stores and big-box stores.

Thousands of New Mexicans shared the Piñon Post’s story about the protest which was planned for this Saturday, December 19th at 11:00 a.m. in Albuquerque, Las Cruces, Clovis, Santa Fe, Portales, Edgewood, Roswell, Farmington, Alamogordo, Ruidoso, Grants, and Carlsbad. It appears all that noise from Piñon Post viewers led the Governor to let up on her restrictions. The mainstream media refused to cover the planned protests by multiple groups across the state.

The new orders by the New Mexico Department of Health read as follows:

The state’s emergency public health order on Wednesday was amended to accommodate slightly increased capacity inside essential retail spaces, such as grocery stores and certain other large “big box” retailers that generate a percentage of their revenue from consumable food and drink products, as cold weather grips most of New Mexico.

In accordance with the state’s graduated red-to-green system of measuring the risk of viral spread in specific counties, the changes establish that essential retail spaces:

May operate at 50 percent of maximum occupancy at the Green Level

May operate at 33 percent of maximum occupancy at the Yellow Level

May operate at 25 percent of maximum occupancy at the Red Level

Previously, essential retail spaces could operate with either a limit on maximum occupancy or a specific number of customers at one time, whichever was smaller. The change eliminates the latter provision.

Lujan Grisham said, “With colder weather here, we want to ensure that people aren’t gathering in lines for an unsafe length of time, especially in communities where there are fewer retail options for essential needs. We are grateful to the numerous companies and stores across New Mexico that have made every effort to keep their customers, employees and communities safe.” 

However, when the strict grocery store limits originally took effect, the weather was well into the 40s and on some days below freezing. The Piñon Post reported on many people, including elders and those with pre-existing conditions waiting in the cold lines to retrieve basic goods such as bread, eggs, milk, and toilet paper. 

The Governor’s press office repeatedly downplayed New Mexicans’ suffering due to her edict, with the Governor’s communications director claiming the breadlines were simply a “minor inconvenience,” while another statement from her office said the breadlines were just a “Republican talking point.”

Documents show Gov. Lujan Grisham is defying her own ‘Green New Deal’

On Wednesday, the pro-energy group Power The Future released Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s power bill, which revealed that the Governor has not been living by the “Green New Deal” standards she had enacted through her “Energy Transition Act” signed in 2019. 

“New Mexico’s Energy Transition Act requires utilities to provide no less than 20 percent renewable electricity to customers and set a deadline of nearly one year ago,” according to Power the Future.

The September energy bill provided by Power the Future shows that the Governor’s residence at 58 Mansion Drive in Santa Fe only uses 13.7% renewable energy, falling far short of the 20% mandated in her bill, yet “taxpayers are still paying more to keep her lights on,” says the group. 

The documents they obtained show the Governor’s electric bill for August 2020 was $2519.02 compared to August 2019 when it was $1766.63. The jump in price for New Mexico taxpayers is over 42%. 

“The Governor isn’t living by the standards she sets for New Mexico’sfamilies. Even worse, those same families not only have to pay for the Governor’s skyrocketing electric bill, but also their own,” said Larry Behrens, Western States Director for Power The Future. “Keep in mind, the Governor’s hypocrisy takes place at the same time New Mexico ranks among the worst in the nation for unemployment.”

During her Democrat National Convention speech, Lujan Grisham’s pre-recorded remarks were shot behind a field of solar panels, where she claimed “time is running out to save our planet” and that Americans must “embrace the clean energy revolution our country, our young people are crying out for, and the leadership the rest of the world is waiting for.” 

Lujan Grisham was previously snubbed for the U.S. Department of Health in former Vice President Joe Biden’s fictitious cabinet, leading her to announce her intention to run for re-election in 2022. She is likely to enact more sweeping anti-oil and gas proposals if she remains the Governor. 

The Governor’s energy bills for August and September are linked here.

Deb Haaland reportedly Biden’s ‘top choice’ for Interior Secretary in fictitious cabinet

On Tuesday, it was first reported by Reuters that Democrat U.S. Rep. Deb Haaland (NM-01) is former Vice President Joe Biden’s “top choice” to lead the Department of Homeland Security in his fictitious cabinet. 

The promotion, if confirmed by the U.S. Senate, would give her reign to oversee 70,000 DOI employees across the country and over 20% of federal land. 

Haaland has signed onto the socialist “Green New Deal” proposed by New York Socialist U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, which would entirely wipe out U.S. oil production to a “net zero” by 2050 and completely ban fracking. If Haaland were to lead the Department, she would oversee one fifth U.S. oil production, which comes from federal leases.

“Two of the sources said that Biden’s team is close to finalizing the decision on Haaland, but are weighing concerns about the loss of a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives, where Democrats are hanging on to a slim majority,” reported Reuters.

During a televised candidate debate in October, Haaland repeatedly lied about her radical record. Haaland has no relevant experience qualifying her for the Department of the Interior, and the choice is apparently a ploy by Biden to once again claim to “make history.”

In latest power-grab, Speaker Egolf floats cutting off how many bills each rep. can introduce

On Monday, it was reported that Democrat New Mexico House of Representatives Speaker Brian Egolf looks to further punish the Republican minority by cutting off how many bills each state representative can propose each legislative session, while on a call to plan for the upcoming 60-day proceedings in January. 

Egolf floated “cutting back on the amount of time and staffing needed to process legislation by limiting each of the House’s 70 members to just five bills,” according to the report. 

House Republican Leader Jim Townsend chided the idea, saying it puts the “majority at quite an advantage.” 

Even far-left Democrat Sen. Daniel Ivey-Soto, who has been fierce opposition to Republican causes, raised concerns with the idea, as Egolf planned to exempt bills supported by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham from the five-bill limit.

Ivey-Soto said, “If you are going to have a limitation, do not exempt anything that the executive wants from that limitation or it allows one set of government to set the agenda for [the] other set of government.” Ivey-Soto also proposed the start date of the legislative session be pushed back, citing COVID-19. 

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), a majority of states have no limits to the number of bills a legislator can pre-file before the start of each legislative session, however, some states have limits to how many bills can be proposed after a certain day following the start of each session. Chambers in 13 states impose a limit on bill introductions.

Also noted by NCSL, “Bill limits might interfere with lawmakers’ abilities to respond to emergencies or the problems of changing times,” and “Limits also may lead to the introduction of bills that are more general in nature and scope, resulting in “Christmas tree” bills rather than ones targeted to specific problems.” 

Egolf is notorious for trying to yank as much power as possible away from the minority, and he has repeatedly broken House rules to ram through his partisan agenda, with such things as spending bills and gun bans.

To write Egolf to share your concerns about his latest proposal, he can be reached via email here: brian.egolf@nmlegis.gov. To contact your legislator, visit the “Find My Legislator” function on the NMLegis.gov website.

NM Electoral College Republicans send votes for Trump, Pence to Congress

On Monday, the Republican Party of New Mexico (RPNM) announced it had requested the Republican electors from New Mexico who pledged to vote for President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence in the Electoral College, convene and cast their ballots. The electors sent their votes to Congress, and their votes are to be opened on January 6, 2020. 

In a press release, RPNM wrote: 

Of course, there is precedent for our Republican Electors meeting on December 14, even as the Democrat Electors for New Mexico also meet.

Democrat Electors pledged to John F. Kennedy convened in Hawaii in 1960, at the same time as Republicans, even though the Governor had certified Richard Nixon as the winner. In the end, Hawaii’s electoral votes were awarded to President Kennedy, even though he did not win the state until 11 days after his Electors cast their votes.

The legitimacy and good sense of two sets of Electors meeting on December 14 to cast competing votes for President and Vice President, with the conflict to be later sorted out by the courts and Congress, was pointed out by prominent Democrat lawyers, Van Jones and Larry Lessig, in an essay published last month on CNN.com.

To the extent that the results in New Mexico might remain in doubt, just as the Democrat Electors met in Hawaii in 1960 while awaiting a final resolution of that State’s vote, so too the Republican Electors met this year on December 14 as we await a final resolution of New Mexico’s five electoral votes.

The Democrat electors met in Santa Fe at the Roundhouse to cast their ballots for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. In other states where election fraud lawsuits are pending, such as in Arizona, Georgia, and Pennsylvania, Republican electors also voted for President Trump and Vice President Pence and sent their votes to Congress.

Earlier Monday, President Trump filed a lawsuit in New Mexico regarding absentee ballots drop boxes allegedly used unconstitutionally.

Trump Campaign files lawsuit in New Mexico regarding ballot drop boxes

On Monday, President Donald J. Trump filed a lawsuit in New Mexico asking a judge to stop electoral votes from being cast and counted. The lawsuit focused on “drop boxes” for the deposit of absentee ballots and alleged fraud that occurred. The suit claims Democrat Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver created an election that was not constitutional.

It made multiple allegations, including that “[c]ertain officials in New Mexico presented the pandemic as the justification for ignoring state laws regarding absentee and mail-in voting. The State of New Mexico flooded their citizenry with hundreds of thousands of ballot applications and ballots in derogation of statutory controls as to how they are lawfully received, evaluated, and counted. Whether well-intentioned or not, these unconstitutional acts had the same uniform effect — they made the 2020 election less secure in the state of New Mexico.

The drop boxes were funded and installed thanks to federal CARES Act money in an effort to “reduce numbers of voters congregating at voting locations in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The suit reads as follows regarding drop-boxes:

The Secretary’s solution to this problem — which also enabled her to take advantage of federal funding earmarked for absentee-ballot drop-off boxes — was to create another ballot-return option called the “drop box.” The word “drop box” does not appear in the Election Code, and the only creature of statute that looks in any way like it is the “secured container” concept from § 1-6-9(E), but the Secretary took the position that drop boxes were not “secured containers.” Rather, the Secretary took the position that drop boxes were simply an embodiment of the longstanding rule that an absentee-ballot “official mailing envelope may be returned in person to . . . an alternate voting location, mobile alternate voting location or election day voting location.” NMSA 1978, § 1-6-9(D). In short, her position is that there is no difference between the longstanding practice of a voter turning in his or her ballot “in person” and a voter turning in to a drop box placed outside the polling place.

[…]

This procedure was simply not followed with regard to what the Trump Campaign believes was the majority of drop boxes in New Mexico, allowing individuals to drop off multiple ballots — meaning that, by definition, they were not the voter on all of them — without speaking to a person at all.

The suit concludes:

The Court should order a temporary restraining order to the Defendant Secretary and the Defendant Electors of the state of New Mexico to delay disposition of certificates of votes for President and Vice President that would ordinarily be performed in accordance with 3 U.S.C. 11, that are made and signed, or will be made and signed, in accordance with 3 U.S.C. 9. until further order of this Court and then issue a preliminary injunction or stay against their doing so until the conclusion of this case on the merits. Alternatively, the Court should reach the merits, vacate the Defendant Electors’ certifications from the unconstitutional 2020 election results, and remand to the state of New Mexico legislature pursuant to 3 U.S.C. § 2 to appoint electors.

The Republican Party previously won a legal victory regarding drop boxes before the 2020 election, with a judge agreeing with the Party that three counties “had failed to provide mandated security measures at their absentee ballot drop box locations.” Toulouse Oliver later agreed to reissue guidelines to all counties regarding dropbox supervision and procedures. 

“The President’s lawsuit is valid and necessary,” said Republican Party of New Mexico Chairman Steve Pearce. “We have questioned these drop boxes and the entire election process where the Secretary of State seems to make up her own rules and allows violations to happen in this past election. To allow these actions to happen stains our election integrity and our very democracy.”

Alex Curtas in the Secretary of State’s office brushed off the new Trump suit, telling the Las Cruces Sun-News that “This lawsuit appears to be yet another attempt by the outgoing Trump Administration to silence the voices of lawful voters throughout the country.” Previously on Monday, New Mexico’s five electors cast their ballots for vice-president and president.

‘Breadline volunteers’ to hold statewide ‘service protest’ against MLG’s grocery store capacity limits

On Saturday, December 19, New Mexicans across the state will hold a “service protest” to oppose Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s COVID-19 grocery store capacity restrictions letting no more than 75 people, including staff, into each store at one time.

According to the organizers, “The governor’s restriction equates to roughly 40-feet of social distancing in a store the size of Wal-Mart, amounting to a whole house worth of space for each person in the store. However, the unintended consequence of this restriction is that those in the line are in much closer proximity to each other for a far longer period of time than they would be if the store was simply allowed to operate at 25% capacity.”

The service protest will feature “easily identifiable” “breadline volunteers” holding signs while they wait in-line in the place of “mothers with children, the elderly, those on [a] fixed income, and persons with disabilities at NM’s hardest hit grocery stores.”

“The 75-person restriction is harming New Mexicans, who often have to wait outside in the cold for over an hour just to enter a store to buy food. As a result, panic buying has occurred. Basic necessities such as milk, eggs, meat, and toilet paper are often no longer on the shelves when those that have waited in lines finally get inside,” write the organizers.

The Piñon Post has exclusively reported on the long lines at grocery stores, which Gov. Lujan Grisham’s office claims are merely “Republican talking points.” Tripp Stelnicki, the Governor’s communications director, claimed the long lines are simply a “minor inconvenience.”

The protest will happen from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. in 12 cities across the state, including at the Albuquerque Costco on 1420 N Renaissance Blvd NE, the Las Cruces: Wal-Mart at 1550 S. Valley Dr., and at other locations in Santa Fe, Portales, Clovis, Edgewood, Roswell, Farmington, Alamogordo, Ruidoso, Grants, and Carlsbad.

To participate in this protest, please contact Sarah Smith at ConcernedforNM@gmail.com for more information.

Resurfaced photos raise questions about Gov. Lujan Grisham’s ties to Communist China

Photographs of former U.S. Rep.-turned Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham meeting with Chinese officials are calling into question the politician’s ties to the Chinese Communist Party and what exactly she spoke about with these Chinese diplomats. 

In August of 2017–eight months after announcing her run for New Mexico’s governorship –Lujan Grisham was spotted at a photo-op at the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Beijing. It appears she was the only U.S. representative on the trip, and she posed multiple times with China’s Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, Zheng Zeguang. For reference, other photographs of world leaders posing at the same location can be found here.

It is unclear why Lujan Grisham met with the Chinese foreign diplomat or why New Mexico media was dead silent on the gubernatorial candidate’s foreign trip to the nation. 

The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs wrote of the meeting, “On August 14, 2017, Vice Foreign Minister Zheng Zeguang met with visiting member of House of Representatives Michelle Lujan Grisham of the US Congress and her delegation. Both sides exchanged views on China-US relations and topics of common interest.” 

Zheng Zeguang, a member of the Chinese Communist Party, has been a harsh critic of President Donald Trump and the freedom of the people of Hong Kong. He opposed President Donald Trump’s signing of the Hong Kong Autonomy Act on July 15, 2020, and demanded the U.S. ambassador to China “correct the mistake.” 

According to the Congressional Research Service, “The [Chinese] Foreign Ministry does not publicly disclose the full membership of its Communist Party Committee. Zheng Zeguang is the only top Foreign Ministry official whose public biography discloses membership of the Ministry Party Committee.” 

In April 2019, four months after assuming the governorship, Lujan Grisham posted about a meeting she had, apparently in Albuquerque, New Mexico at Sandia Resort and Casino, with Chinese Consul General, Ambassador Zhang Ping. It appears she even gave the ambassador a New Mexico pin, which he wore in a photo with her.

On Twitter, she wrote, “I was glad to have a productive conversation with the Chinese Consul General, Ambassador Zhang, on the importance of trade and building international economic partnerships between China and New Mexico.” It is unclear what exactly the Governor promised the Chinese, or what “economic partnership” she had brokered.

According to reports, Zhang Ping “voiced concern about the ‘America First,’ zero-sum game approach of the Trump administration.” Not only that, Ping praised communist Chinese Dictator Chairman Xi Jinping, while also praising socialism:

He lavishly praised Chairman Xi, calling him a “great leader with great vision that will lead the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation” then underlining that China will take a different path than the US—socialism with Chinese characteristics. Ironically, while Zhang drew the clearest ideological lines, he spent a lot of time accusing the US and claiming it was the Americans who had a “cold-war mentality” and a “zero-sum game” view of the world. 

The “different path” Ping refers to is “a deep belief in” and “faithful practice” of “Communism and socialism with Chinese characteristics.”

The close ties between Gov. Lujan Grisham and Chinese officials beg questions as to why she has been so close to the foreign nation and also why she has refused to blame China for concealing the deadly COVID-19 virus before it broke out into the world. The enemy nation covered up the pandemic to hoard medical supplies, as the U.S. Department of Homeland Security later found out. 

Former U.S. Senate candidate Elisa Martinez wrote on Twitter in response to the newly resurfaced photographs, “Perhaps they funded her campaign for Governor while maintaining ‘relations and topics of common interest.’” 

According to multiple reports, other Democrat and anti-Trump governors also met with Chinese leaders with “direct ties” to the Chinese Communist Party. Chinese influence may have been present in Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s COVID-19 response, as her silence on Chinese responsibility is deafening.

As well, she has not said a word publicly about protesters in Hong Kong protesting for freedom from the oppressive Chinese government, which is responsible for countless human rights abuses, not to mention re-education camps for Uyghurs and others. Lujan Grisham’s alleged cousin, Rep. Ben Ray Luján has spoken out about China’s human rights abuses while Lujan Grisham has remained silent.

WATCH: This week’s Piñon Post headlines in under 5 minutes

John Block, editor, and founder of the Piñon Post gives you an end-of-week rundown.

Earlier this week, The Republican Party of New Mexico filed a lawsuit seeking to impound ballots in Bernalillo County to uncover potential fraud. RPNM is financing the lawsuit, and former Republican congressional candidate Michelle Garcia Holmes has signed off on the petition. Former U.S. Senate candidate Mark Ronchetti has not said a word publicly about the lawsuit. 

Also happening this week, Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham suffered a crippling political blow, with former vice president Joe Biden snubbing her to serve in his fictitious presidential cabinet as Health and Human Services secretary after the Governor turned down the position of Secretary of the Interior. Far-left Democrat Attorney General Xavier Becerra was chosen instead for HHS, while socialist congresswoman Deb Haaland is still in contention for the Interior role.

Lujan Grisham announced in her press conference this week that her Administration will be working to ration care at health care facilities, including a moratorium on any procedure her administration deems “non-essential.” She has also enacted a “Crisis Care” strategy to shift around doctors and medical staff to treat COVID-19 with a certification program. Her administration, however, excluded physician assistants from the executive order.

During the press conference, Lujan Grisham announced her intentions to run for New Mexico Governor in 2022, saying she’s “Staying” in the state and that she will “keep her fingers crossed” she can lure New Mexicans to the polls to vote for her agenda. 

In other news, Republican Party of New Mexico Chairman Steve Pearce won decisive re-election over three rivals, easily beating the closest competitor 76-47. The Chairman and former congressman will serve a second two-year term. 

The Piñon Post helped usher in a major victory this week for Albuquerque residents when we organized countless citizens to write Albuquerque City Councilors and demand they reject a proposal by Councilors Isaac Benton and Cynthia Borrego to throw people in jail and issue fines if they do not follow COVID-19 mandates. The councilors dropped the bill from consideration, handing a massive victory to our state’s largest city’s citizens.

In the past few weeks, New Mexicans have heard rumors on social media about Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham potentially being in Hawaii around the date of November 20th. The Governor’s office has been stonewalling the Piñon Post despite our multiple correspondences asking for information on the rumors. Through an IPRA request to the Governor’s Office, we have learned that according to Nora Sackett, the Governor’s press secretary, and Tripp Stelnicki, the Governor’s communications director, they claim she was not in Hawaii. Stelnicki, in an email to another staffer, wrote, “Sooo dumb. I’m at her [house] right now– can confirm, not in Hawaii!” It is unclear why he visited the Governor’s residence while Lujan Grisham’s public health orders bar any such visit.  

Liberal bigwigs in New Mexico have been particularly nasty this week, including Nora Sackett, who mocked New Mexicans by sharing of someone questioning whether to take the COVID-19 vaccine. She wrote, “there is like a not insignificant chance these are New Mexicans I swear to god.” State Rep. Liz Thomson of Albuquerque chimed in, claiming New Mexicans need an “education.” 

Another politico catching heat for comments this week is Democrat Speaker of the Hosue Brian Egolf of Santa Fe, who claimed states joining in Texas’ lawsuit at the Supreme Court to nullify votes cast in four states against state law, are “installing” President Trump as a “dictator.” 

Lastly, an OSHA complaint has been filed by the pro-life group Abortion on Trial against Women’s Reproductive Clinic in Sunland Park for allegedly failing to alert the state about staff members catching COVID-19. One staff member died of the virus, while the abortionist was in intensive care with coronavirus. The Governor’s office has failed to provide a statement on any potential actions to close the clinic for health reasons. 

You can find all those stories and so many others by visiting PinonPost.com. Thank you so much for reading our news, and if you would like to help keep independent New Mexico news online, please consider donating by clicking the donate button at the top of your screen. Thank you for tuning in, and have a great week!

Pro-Trump protest and Jericho March set for Saturday at the Roundhouse

On Saturday, patriot groups are working together to organize a planned pro-Trump protest and Jericho March to support the President and pray for the nation. 

According to an infographic posted by one of the organizers, patriots will meet up at Bernalillo Exit 242 at 10:00 a.m. and start riding from Albuquerque to Santa Fe at 11:00 a.m. 

The rally at the Roundhouse will begin at 12 noon, and will feature speakers from Bikers for Trump New Mexico, Cowboys for Trump, New Mexico Return, among others.

According to the national Jericho March website, the event “is comprised of Judeo-Christians collectively praying to God to intercede, expose a particular darkness, and bring about justice. As a community of believers, we take our petitions to heaven, and we know that our mighty and powerful God answers and can move mountains.” 

The Jericho March movement is supportive of President Trump and uses the hashtags #JerichoMarch and #StopTheSteal in its branding. 

One of the organizers of the protest wrote on the Facebook event, “Opening prayer and pledge, anthem then we march to the St. FRANCIS Cathedral. We will have a prayer vigil and a call to altar there. We will return to the Capitol and have speakers and then gather in unity for a final march and prayer around the Capitol building.”

After the Santa Fe march, patriots are planning on driving up to the Governor’s Mansion and singing Christmas carols outside. 

More information can be found about the event and how you can join in here.

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