Debt crises, national security, health care take forefront at Domenici Public Policy Conference

September 14, 2011 by Janet Perez, Senior Communications Specialist, NMSU Communications & Marketing Services NMSU News Center, for the College of Business

2011 Domenici Public Policy Conference. (NMSU image)

The nation’s debt crisis, national security and health care reform were the hot-button topics experts addressed at the 2011 Domenici Public Policy Conference. Watch NMSU’s Mediasite webcasts of the 2011 Domenici Conference speakers.

“Under the leadership of Sen. Pete Domenici and the NMSU Domenici Institute Advisory Committee, we assembled an outstanding lineup of national leaders to discuss very topical policy issues, to include the competitiveness of U.S. education, health care reform, the national debt and national security — all issues that the senator has championed for many years,” said Garrey Carruthers, dean of New Mexico State University’s College of Business and director of NMSU’s Domenici Institute.

Among those who spoke at the conference were former U.S. Sen. Thomas A. Daschle, who championed health care reform while in Congress and has published two books on the topic; New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez, who discussed matters affecting the state; and retired Air Force Gen. Michael Hayden, who as former director of the National Security Agency and the Central Intelligence Agency discussed cyber security.

This year, Domenici also provided his thoughts on the national debt, a topic he is well versed in as a former chairman and ranking minority member of the Senate Budget Committee. He spoke along with Alice M. Rivlin, a senior fellow in the Economic Studies Program at the Brookings Institution. Rivlin served as vice chair of the Federal Reserve Board from 1996-1999, was director of the White House Office of Management and Budget in the first Clinton Administration, and was the founding director of the Congressional Budget Office.

Domenici and Rivlin co-chaired the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Task Force on Debt Reduction.

“The task force supported raising the debt ceiling promptly and mandating actions to put the federal budget back on a sustainable path,” Domenici said. “We also proposed a tough enforcement mechanism with any debt ceiling legislation in order to build bipartisan confidence among members of Congress that future deficit cuts will actually occur.”

The conference closed with the premiere of a documentary on Domenici’s life in public office. The documentary captures the legacy of Domenici’s accomplishments and serves as testimony to New Mexico’s participation in issues of national importance.

Now in its fourth year of hosting the conference, the Domenici Institute is named after New Mexico’s longest-serving U.S. senator, Pete V. Domenici. Every year, the conference brings together some of the country’s top experts to discuss a variety of important issues facing the nation.

For more information about the Domenici Institute, as well as webcasts, photos and other materials from previous conferences, visit

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