Rep. Armstrong, ABQ Democrat, to retire next year - Albuquerque Journal

Rep. Armstrong, ABQ Democrat, to retire next year

In this Feb. 19 file photo, Rep. Deborah Armstrong, D-Albuquerque, presents the proposed End-of-Life Options Act remotely under new rules to limit the spread of COVID-19. The bill became law this year. (Eddie Moore/Albuquerque Journal)

Copyright © 2021 Albuquerque Journal

SANTA FE – Democratic Rep. Deborah Armstrong – one of the Legislature’s leading voices on health care – plans to leave the state House when her term ends next year.

She announced she won’t seek reelection, clearing the way for redistricting efforts to avoid any consideration of whether a new House map would pair her in the same district as another incumbent.

Also planning to leave the House next year is Rep. Daymon Ely, a Corrales Democrat and chairman of the House Rules and Order of Business Committee.

Armstrong, who lives in the North Valley of Albuquerque, leads the House Health and Human Services Committee, where she has presided over emotional hearings on aid-in-dying and abortion-rights legislation, both priorities of hers that became law in 2021 after years of debate.

She also has sponsored successful bills legalizing marijuana use for adults, establishing a new state fund to help needy seniors and requiring insurance plans to cover contraception.

In a written statement, Armstrong said it was time to focus on her family and other projects.

“I can’t thank enough my incredible constituents and supporters who have supported me and these important initiatives over the years, and who shared my vision of a state where every New Mexican can get access to the quality healthcare they deserve,” she said.

Armstrong is a close ally of Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s, having served as her campaign treasurer. They co-founded a company together in 2008, Delta Consulting, which has helped run New Mexico’s high-risk insurance pool.

Their company’s work with the state prompted criticism from Democratic and Republican opponents in 2018 when Lujan Grisham ran for governor. She had divested herself from Delta the year before.

State law allows legislators to contract with state government if the contract is issued after a competitive bidding process and the officials publicly disclose their interest.

Armstrong started her career as a physical therapist, and she served as the state Cabinet secretary for aging and long-term services from 2004-07.

House Speaker Brian Egolf, D-Santa Fe, said Armstrong was an effective legislator and easy to work with.

“Because of her,” he said in a written statement, “New Mexicans have better, more affordable access to healthcare coverage, the ability to pass away with dignity, and a robust medical cannabis program.

“Her knowledge and experience meant that New Mexicans could rest assured knowing our state’s public health was in good hands.”


Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email yourstory@abqjournal.com

Nativo Sponsored Content

Ad Tango

taboola desktop

MORE ARTICLES LIKE THIS

1
What does a soil and water conservation district do?
ABQnews Seeker
From arroyo safety to fire prevention, ... From arroyo safety to fire prevention, this grant-funded agency literally covers a lot of ground
2
Half of city voters favor Keller's job performance
2021 city election
60% approval rating a year ago ... 60% approval rating a year ago likely due to pandemic response
3
Book merchant Jim Hoffsis was a pillar of Old ...
ABQnews Seeker
Korean War veteran was an admirer ... Korean War veteran was an admirer of military, supporter of local authors
4
Gonzales' current job approval stands at 34%
2021 city election
Democratic sheriff has little support from ... Democratic sheriff has little support from members of own party
5
NM film and television community honors Halyna Hutchins
ABQnews Seeker
New Mexico's film and television community ... New Mexico's film and television community came together to remember cinematographer Halyna Hutchins at a candlelight vigil at Civic Plaza in Albuquerque on Saturday ...
6
Journal Poll: Keller has large lead over mayoral opponents
2021 city election
Gonzales, Aragon lag behind; runoff may ... Gonzales, Aragon lag behind; runoff may not be needed
7
Hours before showtime, Las Cruces High's band truck is ...
ABQnews Seeker
The Las Cruces High School Showcase ... The Las Cruces High School Showcase band's trip to Albuquerque this weekend started on a sour note. Hours before the Zia Marching Band Fiesta ...
8
Don't forget: 10-digit phone dialing to be required in ...
ABQnews Seeker
Starting Sunday, phone users across New ... Starting Sunday, phone users across New Mexico must include area codes when dialing to make all calls, including local calls that previously only required ...
9
States mostly defer to union guidance for on-set gun ...
ABQnews Seeker
Safety standards developed by film studios ... Safety standards developed by film studios and labor unions are the primary protection for actors and film crews when a scene calls for using ...