I lived in New Mexico from 1995 to 2001; Gary Johnson was the governor the entire time. I paid attention to politics, and I can’t remember a single thing he did while he was in office. Oh, yeah; he did a couple of Ironman triathlons. Woo-hoo.
SANTA FE, N.M. — For state lawmakers here who used to work with Gary Johnson, something is familiar about the former governor’s baffled looks, which have turned into an embarrassment for his third-party presidential campaign.
Longtime state Sen. Stuart Ingle (R) recalled how Johnson, soon after taking office in 1995, mostly shrugged and stared during their first meeting together. As Ingle asked Johnson questions about his agenda, Ingle said, Johnson’s most common refrain was, “I don’t know.”
At the end of the meeting, Ingle said, Johnson revealed the one position on which he would hold firm: The state’s budget should not grow. And if legislation to do so passed, the new governor added, “I will veto it.”
Over the next eight years, New Mexico lawmakers would struggle to work with a governor who paid little attention to details. Those who worked closely with Johnson, then a Republican elected as a political novice vowing to shake up the established order, recall a chief executive who would speed through meetings and often preferred to discuss his fitness routine than focus on the minutiae of policymaking.
The only thing I agree with him on is the legalization of marijuana. It’s not because I would smoke it but because it would relieve the justice system of a lot of needless felony charges and if it was taxed like booze it would raise a lot of money. But as for the rest of his platform and his policies, he’s just as much of a wingnut as Donald Trump and Mike Pence, and anyone who votes for him thinking they’re striking a blow for liberty has been smoking the wrong stuff.