Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham
WASHINGTON, D.C. ― Today, Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham (NM-01) delivered a farewell address on the House Floor.
After serving three terms in the U.S. House of Representatives, Rep. Lujan Grisham will leave her role as the Representative for New Mexico’s First Congressional District at the end of December to become the new Governor of New Mexico.
Find the Floor video here and remarks as prepared for delivery below.
Mr. Speaker, I rise for what will likely be the last time I address the House.
First, thank you to the people of New Mexico for entrusting me to represent you in Washington, holding me accountable, and giving me direction.
From my first day in Congress to my last, every constituent or stakeholder who stopped me on the street or walked into the office—your office—to tell me about their issues and priorities was my boss. It has been the honor of a lifetime to work for you.
And thank you to our team of brilliant, passionate staff who worked early mornings, late nights, and weekends because they knew just how important our work was to the people we served. Our team secured hundreds of millions of dollars in federal investments in our state’s economy and returned almost $5 million in earned benefits to New Mexican veterans, seniors, and taxpayers.
Your dedication to New Mexico changed lives.
Lastly, thank you to all the Members I had the pleasure of serving with who helped ensure my time here was a success.
Whether it was Congressman Meadows helping me launch an investigation into SNAP mismanagement in New Mexico; Congressman Cole for helping pass Care Corps grants to assist caregivers; or Congressman O’Halleran for working with me to pass the first ever economic development broadband grant program in the Farm Bill—I have worked with and learned from Members on every part of the political spectrum and regardless of our differences, I have found a universal passion for solving problems and public service.
Every Member here understands the privilege and responsibility of working in the most powerful institution in the world and the immeasurable potential of this body to address the problems that we were elected to solve.
Our shared values and commitment to each other is and always has been this institution’s greatest strength.
To paraphrase Thomas Jefferson, let us never forget that differences of opinion are not differences of the fundamental principles that unite us as Americans. We are all Democrats. We are all Republicans.
I believe that we can embrace our differences of opinion in a shared effort to form a more perfect union, while never allowing polarization, politics, and short-term political expediency undermine our obligation to make a difference in the lives of those who sent us here.
Always remember that power is short-lived, politics is cyclical, and one day someone else will fill our shoes.
As Congressman Cummings used to say when I served with him on the House Oversight Committee, we only hold these positions of power and leadership in trust for a short period of time.
What better way to honor the great leaders who came before us and the people who entrusted us to serve in their footsteps than by seizing every opportunity we have to work together and pass the reins of our nation to future leaders better than we found it.
To all the new members: Stand tall—no matter how tall you are—be courageous, don’t take “no” for an answer, and never stop working to tear down the roadblocks that stand in the way of advocating for your constituents who count on you every day.
To the people of New Mexico: thank you for the honor of representing the 1st Congressional District, and thank you for entrusting me to revolutionize our education system, lead the nation in clean energy development, and create an economy that prioritizes hard-working families as your next Governor.
I look forward to continuing to work for you in your Roundhouse next year.
Mr. Speaker, although I yield back for the final time, I have never been more hopeful about our future and the next generation of Members who will stand here, address this Chamber, and commit to the shared values that form the foundation of progress after I’m gone.