Former U.S. Senator Pete Domenici dies at 85

Longest serving senator from New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) - Pete Domenici, a former Republican senator from New Mexico has died. Domenici was 85.

The Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington D.C., where he was a senior fellow and co-chair of their Debt Reduction Task Force, confirms that the former lawmaker died Wednesday morning in Albuquerque.

Domenici was elected in 1972 and became New Mexico’s longest serving senator.

In 2008 he declined to seek a seventh Senate term, saying he had been diagnosed with an incurable brain disorder.

Domenici is one of five children and the son of an Italian immigrant. Growing up in Albuquerque he worked in his father’s grocery business.

Later he graduated from St. Mary’s High School in Albuquerque in 1950 and then earned a degree in education from the University of New Mexico in 1954.

After, Domenici received a law degree in 1958 from the University of Denver and returned to Albuquerque to enter into private law practice.

Domenici married Nancy Burk and had eight children together. He was also elected to the Albuquerque City Commission in 1966 and then elected to commission chairman in 1967.

During his tenure in the Senate, Domenici was involved with energy and natural resources, behavioral health, and budgetary matters.

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