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Incumbent, New Mexico House Of Representatives
District 35

Angelica Rubio

Climate Science-Based Policy

  1. Do you agree with climate scientists that we are facing a climate emergency?

    1. Yes

  2. Do you agree with climate scientists that the brunt of the impacts we face due to climate change will be put on those who contributed the least emissions? (The global South, Indigenous, and low-income communities)

    1. Yes

  3. Do you agree with climate scientists that greenhouse gas emissions must be reversed within 6 years in order to achieve carbon neutrality in time to keep global temperature rise below 1.5 degrees and to avoid catastrophic runaway climate disruption? - IPCC Report

    1. Yes

  4. If elected, what specific policies will you initiate in your first year of service to begin transitioning our state economy from an extractive economy to a regenerative economy within the timeframe set by the world's leading scientist?

    1. Since my election back in 2016, I have been introducing legislation every year to address the climate crisis, primarily making sure we listen to communities who are impacted by policies around fossil fuels and who are dependent on them for their livelihoods, to make sure that they have adequate support if and when we transition away from all fossil fuels. You can find a list of those pieces of legislation at

Community Engagement Questions

  1. What are the current needs or issues you see across the state, city, or county and how do you plan on addressing those issues if you are elected?

    1. We lack connection. NMLeg is the only unpaid legislature in the country, which makes it one of the biggest challenges for folks like me to have opportunity to hear more from communities. I have a full time job with an incredible amount of student loan debt, but also want to make a difference, but time makes it hard. Our institution was designed to keep many of us out of the legislature to serve. From a community perspective, and for good reason--folks are tapped and checked out of the political process, and especially from governance. I've tried utilizing social media since my election in 2016, to provide more details on the day to day and ongoing updates, including riding my bike up to SF and hosting town halls along the way.

  2. What is your vision of the ideal relationship between communities and environmental/climate justice?

    1. The ideal relationship should be one that is rooted in principles of equity, empowerment, sustainability and economic opportunity. It's challenging to think about a restorative economy when our imagination is crippled by capitalism, but I feel very strongly that if we embraced this concept, which focuses sustainable practices that benefit people and planet, and trusted that communities impacted, who are fully engaged meaningfully, and who could establish policy for the future, while still rectifying the harms of the past, would make an incredible difference for our future. New Mexico is small enough that we could do this, and be a beacon for the rest of the world.

  3. What role do you believe communities actively play in policy development? Especially when addressing issues that have been inherited and faced for generations?

    1. Communities not only should play an active role, but decisions must be made by them. Legislators have a strong tendency to believe that the experts are the scientists and the businesses, but it is the communities who are impacted by the policies we should be listening to. Furthermore, it is not true that policy shifts take longer when we include communities--when they decide the answer is right in front of us. It's just that legislators and special interest do not like what those answers are. Community should always lead.

  4. What changes will you propose so that community driven solutions have equitable influence over policy-making, and are valued as much if not more than private profit driven solutions?

    1. Community organizing must be at the center of transformational work and liberation--while the legislature and policy should be a tool to reach our overarching goals, for now. While doing this simultaneously, we could work towards electing our own community members to run for office and win, and provide them with the resources that they need to lead powerfully. First step is to modernize our legislature so that it pays a salary for our own leaders to serve, and make incredible reforms to the institution itself in which we try to remove money from politics--especially from the fossil fuel industry.

  5. How do you plan on engaging communities and youth in policy development or proposals?

    1. I feel like I've tried in my last eight years, but there's still more work to be done. As previously mentioned, I try to do as much as I can on social media and through my work as a bike advocate. I would like to spend more direct and face to face time, but it can be a challenge, looking for ways to improve that. I also prefer that groups tell me what they want to work on instead of me going to them to tell them my ideas. I look at policy through the lens of what the community wants/needs, and need for groups to feel comfortable to come to me to discuss, and also be in community with them.

  6. Describe your previous experience working on social/health/environmental justice issues, do you have experience working with impacted communities to co-develop solutions?  How will you use this experience to tackle the climate crisis?

    1. I was/am a community organizer before I was an elected official. I grew up in rural southeast New Mexico, just down the road from the refinery, but it wasn't until I was living in Los Angeles and attending grad school that I recognized the environmental racism I grew up in. Since then, I returned to New Mexico to organize in SE NM, before returning to Las Cruces, where I have been working on issues at the intersection of workers rights/immigration/environmental justice.







A Just Transition

  1. What connections do you believe exist between our state/local economy and budget and environmental and climate impacts? How will you work to ensure that the state/local budget fosters economic, environmental, and climate justice?

    1. New Mexico state economy and budget does not prioritize the environment and climate. Because of our dependence on fossil fuel extraction as THE main revenue for our entire state budget, leaders can't seem to imagine a world in which this state survives economically without the extraction oil and gas. For the past eight years, I have worked to move our legislature to recognize that we not only need to transition away from oil and gas extraction for climate purposes, but because we're also facing an economic catastrophe if we do not find solutions for alternatives. For the past two sessions, significant investments have been made for transition, especially in places like the southeast, but more needs to be done and I will continue to do that.

  2. How do you see the role of oil and gas corporations in New Mexico’s future as a result of the climate crisis?

    1. Fossil fuel extraction is the reason we're facing a climate crisis. Period. Because of our very abusive relationship with the oil and gas industry, and the fact that it is an industry that provides so much (yet has kept so many of our communities impoverished) the role of the industry is one in which it dictates for many policy makers, policy priorities.

  3. Define environmental racism in your own words and provide an example in NM.

    1. Environmental racism is the neighborhoods and region in which my family and I grew up, predominantly immigrant and Latinx where the oil and gas industry established and maintained its stronghold on our communities by poisoning us while employing us. You see it in Carlsbad with WIPP, you see it in the NW with uranium mining and our legacy around nuclear that have impacted native and indigenous communities throughout the state, we're seeing it now in Sunland Park where Latinx communities are drinking poisoned water. All of this to say that New Mexico is not only the dumping ground for the world, because our humanity has never been dignified, but we see it in our communities where BIPOC are chosen first to die for science and exploration.

  4. How will you be playing a role in a just transition away from fossil fuels for NM?

    1. As previously mentioned, I am one of a few legislators who have introduced legislation for the past eight years that addresses transition. You can find at

  5. Do you believe climate action is an issue of intergenerational justice? What is the responsibility of your generation to the youth and future generations if elected? Explain.

    1. Yes. It is our responsibility for my generation to listen and let the youth lead.

  6. How can pollution and contamination impact our youth and communities?

    1. Answered in previous questions.

  7. How will you include Traditional Land Based Knowledge when developing policy?

    1. Answered in previous questions.

  8. If elected, will you support investing some of the money from oil and gas revenues to fund A) dedicated resources for a Just Transition Study to model alternative economic pathways for our state including oil and gas revenue replacement and phase-down          B) create a just transition fund to invest in community-driven climate planning for local economies to divest from harmful industries and build alternative economic visions and investments that effectively contribute to climate mitigation and community health?  Explain.

    1. Yes. As previously mentioned, I've been leading in these efforts.

  9. Name specific alternative sources for state/local revenue that you'd pursue and propose if elected

    1. Reforming our state tax code so that they are more progressive.

  10. Do you support the development of Hydrogen energy, nuclear energy, and/or carbon capture and sequestration in NM? Why or Why Not?

    1. No. While it would lead to jobs for communities looking to transition away from oil and gas, I do not believe that they are the right one's to pursue. Both from a climate perspective as well as an economic perspective. It's all temporary and yet will cause insurmountable challenges and crisis. 

  11. Do you support community ownership of energy where Cities/Counties/Indigenous Nations are able to own, produce, and sell electricity to residents and keep energy dollars local?

    1. Yes.

  12. What do you believe is the fossil fuel industry/utility’s responsibility for cleanup and how as an elected official in the public office for which you are running do you plan to hold industry accountable for pollution and cleanup?

    1. They should clean it up.

  13. Do you support the State Land Office’s moratorium/prohibition on new oil and gas leasing on state trust lands within one mile of schools or other educational facilities?  Would you support legislation to create  a public health buffer zone prohibiting oil and gas drilling within one mile of schools on ALL NM lands?

    1. Yes

  14. Have you accepted any donations from fossil fuel companies or utilities? 

    1. No

  15. Can you commit to not accepting donations or funds from fossil fuel companies if you are elected?

    1. Yes

  16. What are your ideas to loosen the grip of industry on the state legislature and strengthen our democracy?

    1. Pay legislators a salary to start, and then campaign finance reform.

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