New Mexico Lawmaker Removed From Committee Over Allegations

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — State Sen. Daniel Ivey-Soto has been removed from his position as chairman of the New Mexico Finance Authority interim committee due to sexual harassment allegations against him.

Senate President Pro Tem Mimi Stewart announced the move Saturday, and appointed Sen. Nancy Rodriguez, D-Santa Fe, to replace Ivey-Soto on the committee.

“Given the scope and nature of the allegations levied against Senator Ivey-Soto, it would be inappropriate for him to remain in a position of authority until the allegations are fully, fairly and transparently resolved,” Stewart said in a statement. “Our committees must be functioning at their very best. Members should feel comfortable working with their committee leaders, as should the public and all those who interact with them.”

Stewart also wants Ivey-Soto to step down from the Senate Rules Committee, the panel he leads during formal legislative sessions, but she does not have the power to remove him from that post unilaterally.

Ivey-Soto has denied the harassment allegations.

“Apparently, we’ve dispensed with the concept of innocent until proven guilty,” Ivey-Soto told the Albuquerque Journal.