Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Capitol Still Abuzz Over Dethroning of Manny Aragon.(Editorial Page)(Column)

Byline: LOIE FECTEAU Of the Journal

SANTA FE The always quotable Billy McKibben dropped by the Capitol last week to chat with his former Senate colleagues and to watch the goings on in the chamber now led by Senate President Pro Tem Richard Romero.

"Unbelievable," was how McKibben summed up Romero's surprise dethroning of longtime Senate leader Manny Aragon, an Albuquerque Democrat.

Romero, also an Albuquerque Democrat, was elected president pro tem on the second day of the legislative session on a 21-20 vote when he and two other Democrats joined with all 18 Senate Republicans to oust Aragon.

"I would have never imagined that would take place," said McKibben, a Hobbs Republican, who retired last year after 19 years in the Senate.

McKibben said he can't believe Republican senators didn't strike some kind of deal with Romero on passage of their legislative agenda. …

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