Albuquerque, NM – According to numbers released by the New Mexico Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver’s office, over 750 New Mexicans submitted comments opposing an anti-free speech measure – but Secretary Oliver chose not to count them.
According to a statement released by Secretary Oliver regarding her revised measure, her office completely discounted the comments submitted by 758 different concerned New Mexicans in opposition to the measure – solely because they had used a digital tool made available by Concerned Veterans for America (CVA) which connected citizens to the Secretary’s office. The Secretary’s office claimed the comments were not “unique.”
After the first round of public comments, Secretary Oliver did not elect to draw a distinction between comments that were “unique,” despite many of the comments favoring her measure being submitted with the same format and wording from different signers.
CVA Policy Director Dan Caldwell issued the following statement:
“Secretary Oliver’s attempt to discount the voices of hundreds of New Mexicans underscores exactly why free speech rights must be fiercely defended. The government should never be able to silence concerned citizens. Secretary Oliver’s actions as a government official are alarming.”
Secretary Oliver circumvented the legislative process to introduce her unconstitutional measure, which – if left unchallenged – will force people to list their private information on government registries indicating what causes they support.
CVA activists were present at public hearings on Secretary Oliver’s rule, and joined phone banks and knocked on doors to raise awareness about the threat this measure represents.