Thursday, April 28, 2016

Home Stretch Questions for Gary Johnson #4

Former Governor of New Mexico Gary Johnson spe...
Former Governor of New Mexico Gary Johnson (Photo credit: Gage Skidmore via Wikipedia)

Governor Johnson,

In a recent debate with fellow Libertarian presidential aspirant Austin Petersen in Oregon, you said "So I have a political arm, Our America Initiative, and we've been more outspoken regarding the Patriot Act perhaps than any other organization, writing editorials constantly about the Patriot Act and the infringement that it poses to all of us. As governor of New Mexico, I would have never ever established the Department of Homeland Security. I think it's incredibly redundant." You make that claim starting at about 26 minutes, 10 seconds into this video:

The National Governors Association says otherwise in its reprint of the New Mexico Department of Public Safety's Homeland Security Strategic Plan:

In January 2002, Governor Johnson appointed the Department of Public Safety (DPS) Cabinet Secretary, Thomas L. English, as his Homeland Security Advisor. Mr. English immediately established the Office of Emergency Services and Security (OESS) to carry out homeland security functions and requirements. In July 2002, Mr. English established the DPS, Special Investigations Division, CounterTerrorism Intelligence Section (CTIS).

The strategic plan describes an aggressive intelligence and surveillance plan, to include expanding New Mexico's war on drugs under cover of the war on terror, in direct contradiction to your public statements indicating a desire to pare back the drug war:

The State's Homeland Security Advisor created a counterterrorism intelligence section within the Department of Public Safety, Special Investigations Division. This section will train law enforcement officers statewide in basic terrorism concepts and procedures in developing useful counter-terrorism intelligence. Another focus of this unit will be on identifying sources of drug funds and repositories for drug proceeds. It is believed that drug monies are being utilized to fund terrorist organizations.

The record says that you actually did exactly what you now say you never would have done, not just on the broad issue of "Homeland Security" but with respect to the war on drugs and police militarization (as of the strategic report, using federal grants of more than $5 million for equipment purchases).

What other parts of your actual record as governor of New Mexico are the exact opposite of the claims you make about that record today?

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