Copyright © 2020 Albuquerque Journal
SANTA FE – Rep. Tim Lewis, R-Rio Rancho, plans to step down at the end of the year and will halt his campaign for a sixth term.
Lewis, a teacher who joined the Legislature in 2011, was unopposed in House District 60, and the state Republican Party can choose a replacement for him to appear on the ballot. It’s too late for the Democratic or Libertarian parties to add someone to the ballot, because they never nominated anyone in the first place.
“The decision to withdraw now has not been an easy one for me,” Lewis said in a written statement. “My family is the primary reason, but I also recognized early on that the office is best served by those who do not make a career out of politics. As a high school social studies teacher, I have tried to model what good public service looks like.”
During his tenure, Lewis successfully backed legislation to make reconstruction of the Paseo del Norte and Interstate 25 interchange a priority, and to grant credit to students who pass career and technical courses, among other bills.
Democrats hold a 46-24 edge in the House and 26-16 majority in the Senate. But Lewis served as vice chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee when Republicans held a majority in the House in 2015-16.
Republican Party Chairman Steve Pearce described Lewis as a “one-of-a-kind public servant who put in countless hours serving the people of New Mexico while not accepting his salary as a public school teacher. The New Mexico legislature is an all-volunteer body; all who serve sacrifice. Lewis was no exception sacrificing above and beyond the call of duty.”
Dan Lewis, a former Albuquerque city councilor, doesn’t live in the district and isn’t a candidate to replace his brother.