New Mexico Governor Appoints Senator
Santa Fe, New Mexico: On October 25, Governor Susanna Martinez appointed John "Pat" Woods to the District 7 Senate seat. The seat was vacated by Clint Harden, who resigned this fall after ten years of service. Harden was first appointed to the seat by then-Governor Gary Johnson in 2002, and won elections in 2004 and 2008. He chose not to run to maintain his seat, and instead resigned and called for Martinez to appoint the senator he supported in the Republican primary.
An interesting twist in this appointment is that the governor personally campaigned against Woods in the primary and supported a different candidate, Angie Spears. Woods and the governor do share views on certain marquee issues, such as a desire to repeal a 2003 law allowing illegal immigrants access to driver's licenses in New Mexico. Because no Democrats ran in the primary on June 5, Woods is unopposed in the general election. His appointment allows him to begin service now instead of waiting until January.