'I know I have the votes' to be elected Senate president pro tem
State Sen. Mary Kay Papen said today she has locked up victory in the race for Senate president pro tem.
"I know I have the votes," she said in an interview at the Capitol.
Papen, D-Las Cruces, has been competing with Sen. Pete Campos, a fellow Democrat from Las Vegas for the pro tem job.
The 42 state senators will elect one of them on Tuesday, opening day of the legislative session.
Campos bested Papen at the caucus of 25 Democrat senators last month. But Papen says she now has the votes of all 17 Republican senators and at least seven Democrats, including herself.
That would give her a decisive win with at least 24 votes.
She said her supporters are solid and will not change their minds.
Papen would succeed former senator Tim Jennings as pro tem. Jennings, a Democrat from Roswell, lost his bid for re-election to the Senate.