N.M. Gov. Martinez to be a headliner at GOP convention

By | August 6th, 2012

The selection of New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez as a headliner at the GOP’s National Convention, Aug. 27-30, in Tampa, Fla., affirms her as a rising star in the national party and may be a prelude to a key surrogate role in outreach to Hispanics and women.

Martinez, noted by the Republican National Committee as “the first female Hispanic governor in the U.S. and the first female governor of New Mexico,” was the only Hispanic included on the list of seven major headliners, which included three former GOP presidential candidates. In addition to Martinez [seen in the video above at her 2010 election], the other headliners were listed as

  • South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, the first female governor of South Carolina and the youngest sitting governor in the United States;
  • Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, the 44th governor of Arkansas and 2008 presidential candidate is a NY Times best-selling author, radio and television show host;
  • Ohio Gov. John Kasich, former House Budget Committee chairman;
  • Arizona Sen. John McCain, the party’s 2008 nominee, now serving his fifth term in the U.S. Senate;
  • Former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, America’s 66th secretary of state and the first African-American female to hold the position; and
  • Florida Gov. Rick Scott, from the convention host state.

McCain, Huckabee and Kasich are former GOP presidential candidates. Kasich, Haley and Scott are tea party favorites. Huckabee is a favorite among social conservatives and Rice is popular among neo-con defense hawks.

Today’s announcement fuels further speculation, as reported by Fox News, about presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney’s running mate selection, given that names noticeably absent from the first round of speakers included U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-FL, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, R-WI, and U.S. Sen. Rob Portman, R-OH.

As reported in the Albuquerque Journal

“Martinez had been widely mentioned as a possible vice presidential pick for Romney, but that chatter has largely subsided.”