In his piece this morning, Joe Monahan suggests that the failure of ethics legislation should be laid at the feet of Common Cause and other folks promoting ethics in state government. But that’s completely backward. Let’s be clear: failure of ethics legislation lies at the feet of state legislators who refuse to give up their gravy train. The public overwhelmingly favors ethics legislation. Albuquerque Journal polls in 2007 indicated a whopping 88% of Democrats, in fact, favored the three priorities included in the bills this session.
When it comes to ethics...these aren’t new issues, they’re old issues. We all know this.
What *is* new is unwillingness on the part of the public to condone a corrupt political system any longer. Monahan should rethink what is essentially a pot-shot at Common Cause, a non-profit organization that has worked steadfastly to move forward the long overdue and greatly needed ethics reforms initiatives. In fact, Monahan might want to expand his pool of “alligators” to include a greater cross-section of New Mexico’s political class. There are plenty who understand what we have here is a conflict between the ethics of the public and the ethics of the gravy train.
**Update** Check out what the rest of the blogosphere has to say about Joe Monahan:
Barb @ DFNM: "Too cowardly to speak their piece in public, too many of the most status quo/reactionary legislators, hangers on and lobbyists for elite special interests are content to leak unsourced material by taking on the personae of the much cited Alligators over at Joe Monahan's place. It's a convenient ploy that can be used to try and gain political advantage -- whether or not such Alligators really exist in terms of a specific issue. Who's to say where the gossip and spin are really coming from and why?"
Parnelli Gonzalez @ Clearly New Mexico: "This wouldn't be the first time that Blogger Joe has carried water for the status quo crowd. Notice the Monahan m.o. at work. His "alligator" accuses citizen advocates of "asking for too much all at once", and then immediately pluralizes the complaint into "critics say." Opinion polls show overwhelming public support for substantive ethics reform now - not at some murky future time when certain self-appointed potentates of the legislative process deign to pass some pale palliatives and then call it reform."
Then Coco in her DukeCityFix post asks "Who is Monahan's Alligator?"
(I think I can give you an answer...it would be "The Man.")
Then, tonight, LP @ New Mexico FBIHOP weighed in tonight about Monahan and his imaginary minions, touching on Monahan's biased commentary: "But this is just one of many issues where Monahan (and his alligators) have done nothing but toe the line of the status quo. They are so used to the way things run and have run in New Mexico for so many years that any potential changes is seen as bad. They don't want any change from the way things have "always run" in the state -- or else their analysis will have to change."