Governor Susana Martinez issued the following statement following Senator Harrison Schmitt’s decision to withdraw his nomination to serve as the State’s Secretary of Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources:
“Senator Schmitt is a former NASA astronaut who underwent a complete background check by the Department of Public Safety as part of his nomination process.
“Senator Schmitt was willing to allow a private investigator access to his personal information, but he was not willing to waive that investigator’s liability for any improper actions or use of that information. While one can understand Senator Schmitt’s concerns, complying with the Legislature’s request is necessary to restore public confidence in state government. That’s why I am requiring all of my cabinet secretary designees to comply with that request and this has led to Senator Schmitt withdrawing his nomination.
“I wish Senator Schmitt the best in his future endeavors and I will work swiftly to find a qualified replacement to lead New Mexico’s Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department.”
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