Susana Martinez Says No To A White House Run
New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez has been a rising star in the GOP ever since first being elected in 2010. Last year, after Mitt Romney clinched the GOP nomination, her name was often mentioned as a potential running mate. Now, her name is on many people’s list of potential Presidential candidates. Martinez, though, says she’s not interested:
Gov. Susana Martinez has a one-word answer for anyone who asks whether she’ll run for president: No.
The first-term Republican, in town for a major fundraiser for her re-election campaign hosted by some of the biggest names in the GOP, says she’s happy with her current job, and that she feels she owes it to a very specific segment of her constituency to serve out her two terms.
“As the first Hispanic female governor in the country, I have a lot of little girls who come up to me, and they know who I am. They know that I’m the governor. They get big-eyed and they call me by my first name, and I’ve got to set an example for them and pave a path for them,” Martinez said in an interview. “I can’t abandon this job and not do it honorably and to the fullest extent possible that benefits them. And so I wouldn’t do it because of them.”
Before you dismiss that as what we usually hear from people who really are thinking about a Presidential run, I’d remind you of what James Joyner posted last year regarding Martinez’s other reason for wanting to stay close to New Mexico:
It’s a question she has batted away since before she took office, but speculation about Gov. Susana Martinez becoming the Republicans’ nominee for vice president just won’t stop, no matter how often she says “no.”
Political pundits say the first-term Republican governor could be an ideal running mate for the eventual GOP presidential nominee. They note she’s the nation’s first Hispanic female governor and say she could attract female and Hispanic voters who appear to favor President Barack Obama over presumptive Republican challenger Mitt Romney.
And politicos are quick to point out that a politician’s “no” doesn’t always hold true when a call from a presidential candidate comes. Think back to 2008 when then U.S. Sen. Joe Biden was asked whether he would take the vice president spot if asked by Obama. He replied: “No. I promise. No.”
But Martinez insists that when she says “no,” she means it.
Martinez told the Journal recently that her responsibility as guardian of her developmentally disabled sister, Lettie, in Las Cruces is one that she can’t take to Washington, D.C., regardless of who calls.
“The family has to be a consideration, and for me to take (my sister) to Washington would be to separate her from … the family that’s down there, and that would be devastating,” Martinez said. “I just couldn’t do it.”
Staying in Las Cruces allows Martinez’s 54-year-old sister to remain near their father, Jake, who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease and lives nearby in El Paso, Martinez said. Despite the Alzheimer’s, Martinez has said, her father has continued to recognize her sister.
So, when Martinez says no, she means it.