By Barry Massey
The Associated Press
SANTA FE — The Senate has elected Democrat Mary Kay Papen of Las Cruces as its top-ranking leader, making her the first woman in more than 70 years to serve as president pro tem.
Papen won Tuesday with the unanimous support of majority Democrats, who rallied behind her rather than pushing ahead with a potentially divisive contest between Papen and Democrat Pete Campos.
She was elected shortly after the Legislature convened.
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