It’s one of Joe Biden’s boldest campaign pledges for tackling climate change. But it’s one that would have a big impact on a Democratic stronghold. New Mexico is waiting to see whether the president-elect follows through on a promise to ban new oil and gas drilling on public lands. As Juliet Eilperin and I report, any effort to halt new oil and gas permits on federal acreage will face significant legal and political hurdles — including from many Democrats in oil-producing states.
Nowhere is the tension within the Democratic Party over the issue of a potential drilling ban greater than in New Mexico.
The spotlight on the Land of Enchantment, which has voted blue in all but one presidential election since 1992, comes as Biden appears primed to pick a New Mexico Democrat to be his interior secretary. Rep. Deb Haaland and Sens. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich are each in the running to be Biden’s top public lands manager.
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