9:40am

Tue February 11, 2014
Local and State News

Democrat Defends Vote Against State Budget

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Democratic Rep. Sandra Jeff of Crownpoint says she's been unfairly criticized for her vote against a $6 billion budget bill, which stalled last week on a tie vote in the House.

Jeff said in a House floor speech yesterday that there have been automated phone calls in her district suggesting that she doesn't support public education. She said she expected opposition in her re-election bid this year.

Jeff also expressed concern that some lawmakers might try to retaliate by opposing a new gambling compact with the Navajo Nation, of which Jeff is an enrolled member.

"I will not change my vote," Jeff said.

She also declared, "I will always be a Democrat."

Jeff was the only Democrat who voted against the budget, joining House Republicans who were in opposition.