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Quotes about Domenici

“Sen. Domenici is a legend in New Mexico politics, and though he will be sorely missed, his impact will be felt in the state – and the nation – for generations to come. While we sat on different sides of the political aisle, I admired Pete’s dedication to the well-being of all of New Mexico. He will be remembered for his meaningful contribution on so many issues – especially fiscal responsibility and the federal budget, energy policy and New Mexico’s national labs, free trade, and his personal and heartfelt dedication to ensuring parity in the health care system for those suffering from mental illness. But what I admire most about Pete is that during his over 30 years representing the state of New Mexico in the Senate, he always kept New Mexicans first. It’s partly thanks to him that the New Mexico congressional delegation continues a tradition of working together regardless of party – we need more of that in Congress today.”

– U.S. Sen. Tom Udall

“It is with a heavy heart today that we say goodbye to a man that single-handedly transformed the state of New Mexico. Sen. Domenici was a powerful voice for all New Mexicans and went above and beyond for the people and families who call the land of enchantment home. I had the great privilege of working closely with Sen. Domenici over the years, and fostered a relationship with him as a friend, mentor and leader. He didn’t hesitate to put every single New Mexican before himself and fought tirelessly to make sure opportunities for a better life were available to all. He was a titan – a fighter – and his work for the wellness and prosperity of New Mexico will forever be remembered. There are no words that can ease the pain we share today, but together we can make sure his legacy lives on.”

– U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce

“This is a sad day for all New Mexicans. Sen. Domenici was a dedicated statesman who always put New Mexico first. His devotion to our state was evident throughout his lengthy career. He tirelessly advocated for a better future for all New Mexico, from our labs and military bases to infrastructure and our innovation centers. Sen. Domenici was also a champion of higher education, pioneering the Domenici Public Policy Conference which, even today, brings national leaders in government and innovation to New Mexico to help guide future generations of policymakers. While we mourn Sen. Domenici’s loss, we celebrate his legacy as a champion for New Mexico and our nation. There is no doubt generations of New Mexicans have a brighter future with more opportunity because of Sen. Domenici’s tireless work.”

– Gov. Susana Martinez

“Throughout his storied political career, Pete Domenici displayed the brand of leadership that is needed to manage difficult problems. He identified challenges facing the country — such as energy, nuclear proliferation, and our federal budget. And then, never one to back down from a battle, he took a long-range approach to address those problems. He did so with a laser-like focus on results rather than allowing himself to be distracted by ideological battles that too often undermine efforts to reach a national consensus. In this way, he very ably served the majority of Americans who want to fix problems rather than just argue about them.”

– Former Secretary of State James A. Baker III

“I am saddened by the news that my friend, mentor, colleague, fellow New Mexican, and great American, Sen. Pete Domenici passed away this morning,” Wilson said. “I always felt privileged and fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with Sen. Domenici on so many projects important to the country and New Mexico. Others will remember his many contributions as a leader and legislator.”

Former U.S. Rep. Heather Wilson, now secretary of the Air Force

“Beloved at Los Alamos for decades, no one has better understood and supported the essential and enduring national security mission of Los Alamos better than Sen. Pete Domenici. His commitment and determination to ensuring a strong laboratory into the future is evidenced by his unwavering support for bringing cutting-edge supercomputing facilities to the laboratory and ensuring the laboratory possessed unsurpassed technical capabilities to counter threats to this country from abroad. Sen. Domenici was also a passionate believer in the benefits of Big Science to our society, referring to our national laboratories as ‘crown jewels.’ He was instrumental in making use of our supercomputing for projects, beyond national security, such as mapping the human genome.”

– Los Alamos National Laboratory Director Charlie McMillan

“It goes without saying that Sen. Pete Domenici cared deeply for New Mexico and its people. His political pragmatism represented the views of New Mexicans in every corner of the state, which is why he was so respected. I can’t think of anyone who had a greater impact on New Mexico, particularly through his work on energy policy and securing funding to expand the work at our national labs. His budget prowess gave New Mexico outsized influence, which helped shape the state’s economy, while meeting our national security needs during and beyond the Cold War. My lasting impression of Sen. Domenici will always be his heroic work on mental health parity. His compassion and dedication to improve the lives of people with mental disabilities is a legacy worthy of a giant like Pete Domenici.”

– U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham

“Pete Domenici was a political giant who loved New Mexico and championed our state’s interests for more than 50 years. His contributions to the labs, our energy resources, the state budget and protecting our environment are incalculable. Above all, he was a decent man who never forgot his roots, his family and his fellow New Mexicans.”

– Former Gov. Bill Richardson

“Sen. Domenici loved New Mexico and genuinely cared for the welfare of each and every citizen. He was a bold and fearless leader and served us and the nation with dignity, compassion and benevolence. Sen. Domenici was also a longtime family friend and worked closely with my father, state Sen. Aubrey Dunn Sr. He was a friend of the State Land Office and offered his unwavering support on education policy and land and water issues.”

– New Mexico Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn

“When it comes to Los Alamos and Sandia Laboratories … his leadership and his stewardship caused them to be what they are today. Yes, they are a national treasure, but in New Mexico they are also a huge economic driver. His role was unmatched as the chairman of the Senate energy committee. He is the statesman that every senator aspires to be. He was always able to work across the aisle.”

– Sherman McCorkle, an Albuquerque businessman and founder of the Kirtland Partnership Committee

“It is impossible to overstate just how meaningful and impactful Sen. Domenici’s life and service was to the people of New Mexico. He was kind and honest, but always a tenacious advocate and fighter for the interests of our state.”

– Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Terri Cole

“Sen. Domenici’s efforts in support of our educational mission were transformational to health sciences in the state. … He worked in a bipartisan manner to ensure that those struggling with mental illness had access to treatment – and to insurance coverage for that treatment. The effect of this change on the lives of the people we serve, and on their communities, is immeasurable,”

– University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center Chancellor Paul Roth

“He represented something a lot of us should do a better job of – he really prided himself on being bipartisan. The U.S. Senate and the country would be in a much better place if we had 10 more people like him.”

– House Minority Leader Nate Gentry, R-Albuquerque

“I was saddened to learn of Sen. Domenici’s passing, and our thoughts and prayers are with his family. We are grateful for his decades of service to our state.”

– Attorney General Hector Balderas

“He was the rare senator who everybody liked – he was one of kind,” Fleischer said.  “He represented an era in which people worked together, but it was also in his nature to work with people regardless of party.”
– Ari Fleischer, who served as Domenici’s press secretary in the mid-1990s before becoming press secretary for President George W. Bush

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