Senate to vote on Hanna Skandera

Updated: 02/16/2014 11:44 PM | Created: 02/16/2014 10:47 PM
By: Jen Samp, KOB Eyewitness News 4

Governor Susana Martinez handpicked Hanna Skandera and ever since has been by her side.

Three times now, the senate has failed to take a vote, which would officially confirm Skandera as the education secretary.

Skandera self-proclaimed the title "education secretary” on her official website, the governor gave her the title “Secretary-Designate” until she is confirmed.

“I think we need to have a vote and I think we should have had one before now", said Democratic State Senator and majority whip Tim Keller

He argues Skandera is not credentialed for the big job.

She worked as a senior policy adviser to the U.S Education Secretary and was a deputy commissioner for Florida's education system, but she has never been a teacher.

“Our constitution says clearly you need a qualified educator and for better or worse regardless of her ideas I don't believe she meets the criteria,” said Sen. Keller.

A statement from the Department of Education reads:

“Secretary Skandera has broad support from education leaders and business leaders throughout New Mexico. She is well-qualified for a position she has held for three years now and if she wasn’t, the senate would have taken action long ago. Last year, Senator Lopez staged a politically motivated and prolonged political circus at taxpayer expense that did nothing to help improve student achievement in New Mexico. Secretary Skandera looks forward to a fair confirmation process.”

Last year, the confirmation hearing on Skandera lasted for hours.

Political insiders think if the Senate takes a vote, she would get the confirmation.

But political games are not new to the Roundhouse.

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