Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Sanchez Confident in Democrats.(New Mexico)

Byline: Loie Fecteau Journal Politics Writer

* Longtime representative leaves House after serving as speaker for 16 of his 30 years in the Legislature

SANTA FE Longtime House Speaker Raymond Sanchez, defeated in the November general election, said it pained him Monday to be in the Capitol, attending his last committee meeting.

But Sanchez, an Albuquerque Democrat, said he has confidence in other Democratic legislative leaders, including Rep. Ben Lujan, D-Santa Fe, who is expected to be elected his successor as House speaker when the new Legislature convenes today.

"People have said that my shoes will be difficult to fill," said Sanchez, who served as House speaker for 16 of his 30 years in the Legislature, longer than any other New Mexican. …

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