July 13, 2020

Cape Up Live with New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) joins Washington Post columnist Jonathan Capehart to discuss taking on the COVID-19 pandemic in her state by focusing on a robust testing strategy, face masking mandate and a decision not to rely on the federal government. Capehart will also talk with the former state health secretary and U.S. congresswoman about the clash over Spanish conquistador statues and police brutality protests in her state, and being the only Latina on Joe Biden’s vice president purported shortlist.
Highlights
New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said never in her ‘wildest dreams’ could she have imagined that she would be spending her personal time tracking down protective equipment and testing supplies for her state, only to have the federal government take what the state procured. ‘Now we’re seeing it occur again, because without any federal strategy, still, now that you have these outbreaks, governors are in the same situation...It’s the most outrageous environment I’ve ever worked in my entire career.’
  • Jul 13
President Trump and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos have told public school districts that they will withhold federal funding from them if they don’t fully reopen for the 2020-2021 school year. New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham called the threat ‘immature’ and ‘dangerous,’ but she added that one-on-one members of the task force have been effective in solving problems some states encounter. ‘I find this threat another really shallow attempt at trying to get their way without having any real plan.’
  • Jul 13
Compared to other states in the nation, New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham says her state has a third of the hospital capacity and a third of the ventilator capacity per capita. With some bordering states sending COVID-19 patients to New Mexico for treatment, Lujan Grisham says supporting other states means there will be less available resources for New Mexico residents.
  • Jul 13
New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham says her state is seeing increases in the amount of people who comply with the mask mandate, but she said enforcing the rule can be challenging. ‘I think people are treating this pandemic, again, as a political situation. It is not a political situation. It doesn’t care whether you’re Democrat or Republican, young or old...It does not care at all about its host.’
  • Jul 13
Last month, a man was shot and critically injured during a demonstration to remove a statue of Spanish conquistador, Juan de Oñate. Oñate was the first European to colonize New Mexico; he also inflicted terror on Native Americans who first lived in America’s southwest. New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said these statues offer important teaching moments and should not be celebrated. ‘We need statues that are clear and clearly marked about a past we are not proud of and why they’re important teaching moments, but they can’t be celebrated.’
  • Jul 13
Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham
New Mexico (D)
Michelle Lujan Grisham is governor of New Mexico. She is the first-ever Democratic Latina governor in the United States. As governor, Lujan Grisham has enacted progressive and groundbreaking policies and investments that have transformed New Mexico’s public education system, expanded the state’s economy to include more high-quality career opportunities and preserved New Mexico’s precious natural resources and environment. She was a three-term Congresswoman, chairing the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, and she served as a state health and aging Cabinet secretary under three governors, delivering lasting improvements in senior welfare and sweeping investments in public health. Her administration has been aggressive in its response to the COVID-19 pandemic, issuing emergency public health restrictions to prevent the spread of the virus and authorizing economic and tax relief packages for small businesses, local governments and individuals. Lujan Grisham is a twelfth-generation New Mexican. She is caretaker for her mother, Sonja, mother of two adult daughters and grandmother of three.
Interviewed by Jonathan Capehart
The Washington Post
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