Sunday, May 25, 2008
Journal Dem Prez Primary Poll in NM-01, NM-03: Obama Leads
The Albuquerque Journal today released results from a survey by Research and Polling Inc. on the Dem presidential primary race in New Mexico's First and Third Congressional Districts. Matching the February 5th Dem caucus results, Barack Obama is ahead in both Districts. He's widened his lead over Hillary Clinton in both the Albuquerque metro area and Northern New Mexico since the state's Dem caucus:
Results in NM-01: Telephone poll conducted May 20-22 surveying 402 likely Democratic primary election voters. The margin of error was plus or minus 5 points.
Obama beat Clinton in NM-01 in the February 5th primary balloting in New Mexico by about 2.6%.
Results in NM-03: Telephone poll of 500 likely Democratic voters conducted May 20-22. The margin of error was plus or minus 4.5 points.
Obama beat Clinton by about 3.6% in the 3rd District in the February 5th Dem caucus in New Mexico, mostly by running up margins in Santa Fe, Taos and Los Alamos.
The Journal did not poll New Mexico's Second Congressional District in this survey.
According to the Journal's reporting on the May 20-22 poll in NM-01:
- Among Hispanics surveyed, Clinton had a 10 point lead over Obama— 48 percent to 38 percent. "Hillary Clinton is still the preferred candidate among Hispanics," Sanderoff said. "However, Obama's share of the Hispanic (vote) is significant."
- Among all poll respondents between the ages of 18 and 34, Obama had a 13 point advantage— 51 percent to 38 percent— while Clinton led Obama among voters ages 65 and older, 43 percent to 34 percent.
- Among those whose education doesn't exceed a high school diploma, Clinton had a 22 point lead— 52 percent to 30 percent. The opposite was true among college graduates, who favored Obama by 21 points. The margin was even higher for Obama among Democrats with postgraduate work or degrees.
- Among men, Obama had a 12 point advantage over Clinton— 46 percent to 34 percent. Among women, the two were practically even.
According to the Journal's reporting on the May 20-22 polling in NM-03:
- Among college graduates, Obama held a 17 point advantage over Clinton— 49 percent to 32 percent. The two candidates were practically tied among those whose education didn't exceed a high school diploma, though Clinton had at least a small edge among Democrats with some college time.
- While support from Hispanic voters elsewhere in the country has been a major advantage for Clinton, she had a 6 point margin over Obama among Hispanics in the 3rd District— 44 percent to 38 percent. "Hillary Clinton is still the preferred candidate among Hispanics. However, Obama's share of the Hispanic (vote) is significant," Sanderoff said.
- Clinton had the support of 42 percent of the women surveyed, compared with 36 percent for Obama. Among men, Obama had a 21 point advantage— 52 percent to 31 percent.
- On the 3rd District's conservative east side, which includes Portales, Clovis and Clayton, Clinton had a 26 point lead— 46 percent to 20 percent. In the north-central area, which includes Santa Fe, Obama had a 7 point advantage.
- In the reverse of what's often been the case nationally, Clinton edged Obama among younger voters— 44 percent of those age 18-34 backed her, compared with 40 percent for Obama. Obama had the support of more voters ages 35-64.
Clinton edged Obama by 1,709 votes statewide to win New Mexico's Super Tuesday Democratic presidential caucus in February, mostly by winning downstate in rural areas of the Second District and on the rural east side of the state generally.
Friday, May 23, 2008
(Updated) Barack Obama to Visit Las Cruces Monday
UPDATE 5.24.08: According to a press release from the Obama campaign, the early afternoon event will be a Memorial Day Veterans Town Hall with Barack Obama and Gov. Bill Richardson. Attendance is by invitation only and the Town Hall is not open to the public. The location of the event is not yet being made public.
Barack Obama will be in Las Cruces on Monday, May 26, 2008 for a public event of some kind according to his campaign. No other details are available yet, but the word is the event will be related to honoring veterans. I'll let you know when more info is released. In the meantime, content yourself with checking out the video above. Yes We Can!
Michelle Obama, John McCain and George Bush will also be in New Mexico next week. Click for info.
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Michelle Obama, George Bush, John McCain Heading to New Mexico
Get ready for the general election onslaught -- even though we're technically not yet out of primary season. Bush, McSame and Michelle Obama will all be at events in New Mexico next week -- the start of what will no doubt be an unprecedented torrent of A-list politicos, surrogates galore and 24/7 campaign ads blanketing our political landscape. With three open Congressional seats and one Senate seat up for grabs, and with New Mexico expected once again to be a much sought after swing state in the prez race, this should be a doozy of a general election cycle in Enchantment Land.
The Failed President
Bush himself will be here next Tuesday, March 27, at a $1000 per person fundraiser for Senate candidate Darren White and the New Mexico Repub Party. It looks like the event will be held at a private residence in Los Ranchos de Albuquerque. Could it be that the GOP bigwigs will gather once again at the home of Los Ranchos Mayor Larry Abraham? Bush appeared at a fundraiser there for Pete Domenici back on August 27, 2007, when Domenici still claimed he was running for another Senate term.
If so, it would be ironic given that the ACLU has filed suit against Bernalillo County Sheriff Darren White and others for their actions during Bush's August '07 visit. The suite complains that law enforcement officials kept protestors out of sight, more than 150 yards away, while a group of people holding a banner reading “God Bless George Bush! We Pray for You!” were allowed within feet of Abraham's house.
Michelle Obama Fundraisers
Also scheduled for next Tuesday, May 27, are two fundraisers with Michelle Obama -- one in Santa Fe and one in Albuquerque, according to the AP. A $500 per guest - $2300 per co-host reception and luncheon with Gov. Bill Richardson and Michelle Obama will be held at Yanni's Mediterranean Bar and Grill in Albuquerque. A $1000 per person fundraiser with Michelle will take place later that day at the home of former AG Paul Bardacke in Santa Fe. These events are a little rich for my taste. Sure would be nice if Michelle squeezed in a low dollar event for People Like Us, or we're out of luck catching Michelle this time around.
The Man Who Would Be Bush II
John McCain will be in Albuquerque on Monday, May 26th, to speak at a Memorial Day tribute to veterans that's open to the public. It will take place from 10 AM to Noon at the New Mexico Veterans' Memorial at 1100 Louisiana SE. McCain will attend another event in Albuquerque that day, but details haven't yet been released.
Monday, May 19, 2008
Tonight: Kickoff for Santa Fe Grassroots for Obama
From Santa Fe Grassroots for Obama: JOIN US on the 1st and 3rd Mondays of May and June, starting TONIGHT:
May 19, June 2, June 16: 6:00 to 7:00 PM
Santa Fe Main Library, Community Room
The May 19th agenda will include making plans for a Santa Fe Voter Registration drive scheduled for June 28th. Please invite other Obama enthusiasts to join you. And be sure tell anyone who admires your Obama button or bumper sticker that they can get involved, too, by coming to our meetings. Click to RSVP. You can find other local Obama events and join groups at the New Mexico for Obama page on Obama's campaign website.
Friday, May 16, 2008
Quote of the Day: Huckabee Jokes About Gun Aimed at Obama
I wish I were kidding, but I'm not. Not that this is something to kid about anyway, given the toxic nature of too many right-wing extremists stirred up by the likes of smiley Huckabee and his ilk. I guess nothing's off limits in the prez campaign now that Bush himself has compared Obama and the Dems to Nazi appeasers while speaking to the Knesset in Israel.
From the CNN Political Ticker:
During a speech before the National Rifle Association convention Friday afternoon in Louisville, Kentucky, former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee — who has endorsed presumptive GOP nominee John McCain — joked that an unexpected offstage noise was Democrat Barack Obama looking to avoid a gunman.
“That was Barack Obama, he just tripped off a chair, he's getting ready to speak,” said the former Arkansas governor, to audience laughter. “Somebody aimed a gun at him and he dove for the floor.”
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
(Updated) Breaking: Edwards to Endorse Obama
Update: Video clip of Edwards' endorsement
The one many have been waiting for: According to a post by Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post, John Edwards will endorse Obama for president tonight in Grand Rapids, Michigan. This former Edwards supporter is very happy with this news! Edwards has 18 pledged delegates, but it's not clear whether they'd all switch to supporting Obama. This is the second big endorsement for Obama today. Earlier, NARAL Pro-Choice America announced its support for Barack. The group has supported Hillary Clinton throughout her political career. From Cillizza:
Matt Bennett, a former Clinton Administration official, described Edwards as the "troubadour of the working class" and said the North Carolina senator's endorsement of Obama makes it "tougher for Clinton to make the case that working class Democrats can't [or] won't support Obama."
... Aside from the obvious demographic benefits an Edwards endorsement could have, his decision to throw his backing behind Obama also has symbolic import. Edwards is widely seen as one of the major party figures who had remained on the sidelines in the race between Clinton and Obama. That he has stepped in to the fray in hopes of, perhaps, bringing this race to an end should send a powerful signal to undecided superdelegates about the direction of the contest.
Former senator Tom Daschle of South Dakota, a major Obama backer, told CNN: "I think John Edwards is a tremendous national leader and obviously it's no seceret that we've been trying to get his support, his endorsement, his supporters, his counsel as we go through the balance of this campaign for a long period of time."
"All I know is that it's very, very important that as we go forwards, we unite this party," Daschle added. "John and Elizabeth Edwards have a tremendous following in our party. The more we can unite along with their leadership and their followership, the better off our party and the better off Barack Obama is going to be in November."
DFNM Selected as Official DNC Convention Blogger for NM (Can I Say WOW?)
How I learned of my selection. Thanks, Howard!
I'm incredibly honored (and ecstatic) to report that the Democracy for New Mexico blog has been selected by the Democratic National Convention Committee to be the official New Mexico blogger at the Democratic Party Convention to be held on August 26-28, 2008 in Denver. DNC Chair Howard Dean announces our selection in the video above, standing alongside a shot of the blog. Given my long-held enthusiasm for all things Howard Dean, stretching back to his run for president in 2004, the news couldn't come from a more admired source in my book. Yowsa.
Some months ago the DNC solicited applications from bloggers in all 50 states (plus several territories) to vie for one blogger slot per state. They'll form what's called the State Blogger Corps at the Convention. You can see a listing of all the blogs selected to be a part of the team here. And here's a description of the process from the release announcing the selections:
More than 400 applications were received from bloggers across the United States and multiple territories. Some of the blogs selected for the State Corps are full-time, professional endeavors while others are the work of individuals, who through their own efforts have become recognized authorities on state and local politics. Bloggers had to submit daily audience information and provide examples of posts that made their blogs stand out as an effective online organizing tool or agent of change, a demonstration of both the reach and impact blogs have had and will continue to have on the 2008 election. The program recognizes the growth of more localized blogs and is in line with Governor Dean's 50-state strategy.
Each official state blogger will be credentialed for seating with the state's delegation on the Convention floor, and will be an integral part of the Convention action. That means I'll be reporting to you directly from Denver and sharing my experiences and insights day by day as the drama unfolds. I hope I can do the job justice. Lots of fun, but lots of work too. Have I said I'm excited?
The seating of bloggers on the Convention floor is unprecedented in the history of the event. It reflects the Party's embrace of the power and value of the progressive blogosphere in helping to support our candidates and causes, and the Dem's continuing dedication to establishing a two-way feedback loop with ordinary voters all over the nation.
In addition to the State Blogger Corps, the DNCC will soon credential a General Blogger Pool, to include local, state and national political bloggers, as well as niche and video bloggers from across the country. All applicants not selected for the State Blogger Corps are now eligible for selection as part of the General Blogger Pool.
Oh, did I tell you I'm excited?
Sunday, May 11, 2008
Dedicated to Our First African-American Presidential Nominee
I just discovered that Wolfgang's Concert Vault now has embed code for much of its material. Nice. I thought this was the perfect time to put up a musical salute to our first Black presidential nominee -- Barack Obama -- on a weekend when he has surpassed Clinton in the superdelegate count and leads her by virtually unassailable margins in pledged delegates, states won and popular vote. Enjoy a White working class Texas redneck playing a song by Hendrix, possibly the first African-American psychedelic rock guitarist in the world. Seems fitting. Unity.
Saturday, May 10, 2008
Laurie Weahkee Chooses Obama; Barack Catches Clinton in Superdelegates
I'm sure you've heard by now that New Mexico add-on delegate Laurie Weahkee, the Native American Voters Alliance Coordinator at Albuquerque's SAGE Council, has publicly endorsed Barack Obama for president. I'd like to welcome Laurie to the Obama fold -- I know there was a lot of pressure applied by the campaigns of both candidates. Weahkee was one of nine superdelegates and a union leader who endorsed Obama on Friday. Obama is now about even with Clinton in the superdelegate count, depending on the source that's doing the counting.
Laurie Weahkee's official statement released late Friday by the Obama campaign:
“Today, I’m proud to announce my support as a presidential delegate for Barack Obama. After the primary elections in Indiana and North Carolina, it is now absolutely clear that Barack Obama will be our nominee. I’d like to applaud both Senators Clinton and Obama for their commitment and dedication. In particular, I’d like to recognize Senator Clinton for her many years of service to this country, and for laying the groundwork for women across this country to run for office. It is time for all of us to unite behind Obama as we head into a difficult general election. Obama has proven that he can campaign in a difficult environment and still inspire thousands of new voices to take part in the democratic process. As a Native American woman, I’m proud to support Obama, and I ask all of us to now join together and start building the movement for victory in November.”
The New Mexico Independent has an excellent interview with Weahkee, where she goes into more depth about the reasons she decided to endorse Obama and describes her reaction to the local Clinton campaign's challenge to her selection:
... I was a little disappointed by the aggressive tone of the New Mexico Clinton campaign to challenge my selection as a delegate, because I really was at that time undecided. The aggressive tone from folks here locally just added into the my overall sense that the Clinton campaign was really aggressive. It was disappointing. I was truly undecided and they were already putting me in one camp or another. I just felt it was a bad representation on Hillary Clinton and her overall campaign.
I'm sure you recall that Laurie Weahkee won the election to become New Mexico's at-large, unpledged add-on delegate at the April 19 Dem Party State Central Committee meeting, and that the procedure was challenged unsuccessfully by the Clinton camp.
One of the criteria Weahkee cited as a basis for making a decision on an endorsement was the candidate's positions on Native American issues. Here are Obama's Principles for Stronger Tribal Communities. Also check out a Native American Times article on Weahkee.
Weahkee was heavily involved for many years in working to preserve the spiritual and physical integrity of the Petroglyph National Monument on Albuquerque's West Mesa in the midst of heavy sprawl development in the area. Here's a 1999 article from the High Country News that provides good background info on the issue. Here's a statement about the Petroglyphs written by Weahkee, and this article from the now defunct Albuquerque Tribune reports on the controversial extension of Paseo del Norte through the Petroglyphs that was punched through in June 2007 despite the protests and legal challenges of Weahkee's group and others.
Rep. Tom Udall is now the only so-called superdelegate in New Mexico who hasn't yet chosen sides. Until Udall makes his endorsement, it's a 6-5 split for Clinton among New Mexico's supers:
Governor Bill Richardson (Obama)
Lt. Governor Diane D. Denish (Clinton)
U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman (Obama)
Congressman Tom Udall (Undecided)
DPNM Chairman Brian S. Colón (Obama)
DPNM Vice Chairwoman Annadelle Sanchez (Clinton)
DNC Committeeman Raymond G. Sanchez (Clinton)
DNC Committeewoman Mary Gail Gwaltney (Clinton)
DNC Committee Member Fred Harris (Obama)
DNC At-Large Member Mayor Martin Chavez (Clinton)
DNC At-Large Member Christine Trujillo (Clinton)
Add-On At-Large Unpledged Delegate Laurie Weahkee (Obama)
A complete list of New Mexico's 42-member delegation, which includes four alternates, is here. Clinton won 14 of New Mexico's 26 pledged delegates as a result of our presidential preference caucus on February 5th. She won the state by about 1000 votes, although she lost both the First and Third Congressional Districts to Obama. All the margins were tight.
Petroglyph photo by Isaac Eastvold.
Thursday, May 08, 2008
Clinton Implies Working, Hard-Working Americans = White Americans
I guess in Hillary's world, where she still has a chance to win the presidential nomination, only White Americans are working Americans or hard working Americans. According to a report in USA Today:
"I have a much broader base to build a winning coalition on," she said in an interview with USA TODAY. As evidence, Clinton cited an Associated Press article "that found how Sen. Obama's support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me."
"There's a pattern emerging here," she said.
Click to listen to her comments to a USA Today reporter.
Clinton's blunt and demeaning remarks are getting widely criticized in no uncertain terms, as such comments should be at any time in any campaign -- but especially as her sorry campaign for president slides into oblivion. For instance, Pam's Blend says Clinton is "race baiting" and deems her comments "inflammatory" and Oliver Willis writes, "Congratulations, Hillary Clinton, you win the prize for the first Democratic Bigot Eruption since I’ve been keeping track of this."
Mike Barnicle makes it even plainer by writing:
Now, faced with a mathematical mountain climb that even Stephen Hawking could not ascend, the Clintons -- and it is indeed both of them -- are just about to paste a bumper sticker on the rear of the collapsing vehicle that carries her campaign. It reads: VOTE WHITE.
Speculation has been widespread that Clinton would finish the campaign on a high note, going easy on the presumptive Dem nominee. Apparently not.
Instead, Hillary seems to be resorting to the worst kind of racial politics, basically framing African-American voters as unnecessary to her cause and lumping them all together into one homogeneous, problematic demographic viewed as The Blacks. This is something we might expect from certain Klan-friendly Republicans, but from someone who claims to represent the Democratic Party mainstream?
Hillary's comments mirror surrogate Paul Begala's gurglings during a heated exchange on TV with Donna Brazile on the evening of the Indiana and North Carolina primaries in which he stated that "we cannot win with eggheads and African-Americans." Everyone knows, of course, that there are no black- or brown-skinned eggheads. Or hard working Americans who happen to be black, brown or something in between.
Also note the implication that a majority of white working class voters support Clinton because they won't vote for an African-American candidate. I wonder how Hillary knows that all the votes she's gotten from that slice and dice are due to her being white -- and that these Dems would refuse to vote for Obama in the general election because he's not. Such framing is clearly insulting to both white and non-white voters, isn't it? It suggests that we all base our votes primarily on race, not issues or other factors. But then what do I know, I'm one of those "eggheads" I guess, not a "hard working American."
How low can the Clinton campaign go? I hope that question is on the minds of all the undecided superdelegates, as well as those who have previously endorsed Clinton. Is this the kind of campaigning we want to see among Democrats, or Americans for that matter?
What's ironic is that Hillary's husband failed to win the "white vote":
According to CNN's 1996 exit poll, Bill Clinton lost the white vote (Dole 46%, Clinton 43%, Perot 9%). He lost the white male vote by an even larger margin (Dole 49%, Clinton 38%, Perot 11%). And he lost gun owners badly (Dole 51%, Clinton 38%, Perot 10%). However, Clinton won the popular vote overall 49%-41%-8%, and he won 70% of the electoral votes.
In 2000 -- when Al Gore won the popular vote by half a million votes -- he lost white males to Bush by a whopping 60%-36%, according to CNN's exit poll. He lost men overall 53%-42%. He lost whites overall 54%-42%. He lost gun owners 61%-36%. He lost small-town voters 59%-38% and rural voters 59%-37%. He lost the Midwest overall 49%-48%.
She knows that, but at this point in her desperation she apparently doesn't care.
Wednesday, May 07, 2008
You Say It's Your Birthday ...
Back from a few days celebrating my birthday, including a visit to Taos and other points in Northern New Mexico. Up near Pilar, the Rio Grande is rushing with a rowdy Spring melt-off (video clip-turn up sound) and the cottonwoods are just turning that singular shade of chartreuse they take on when their leaves emerge. It's lush and very green in many areas up North due to the heavy winter snowfalls. Mary Ellen engineered a special surprise visit from my oldest and best friend, who flew in from Chicago to join the festivities. Her birthday is the day before mine. Two peas in a pod in many ways.
We drove up I-25 to 84-285 to 68 along the river and over to Taos. On our return, we took the High Road through Las Trampas, Truchas and Chimayo. The peaks of the Sangre de Christos are still magnificently snow-packed. Political signs were abundant amidst the towns and Pueblos all over the North.
One of our best birthday presents was the news on the radio on the way back reporting Obama's big win in North Carolina and his holding Clinton to a squeeker in Indiana. I think we have our nominee. Finally. The only thing left for the Clinton campaign to decide is when and how to bow out. Let's hope she does it soon and gracefully.
The worst thing about going away is returning to my full-to-the-brim email accounts. Catching up properly will take a few days. Be patient. It can be so overwhelming to realize how much political activity is going on nationally and locally -- all at the same time.
For the moment, I'd like to hang onto my natural birthday-mountains-rushing-water-with-friends-high for a few more hours. It was that good.
Monday, May 05, 2008
RSVP Now: Obama Campaign Vote for Change Kickoff in ABQ on 5/10
The Barack Obama campaign is launching its new 50-state voter registration and mobilization drive on May 10th at locations across the nation. In Albuquerque, Obama supporters will meet at the IBEW Union Hall at 4921 Alexander Blvd. NE (map) on Saturday, May 10, at 9:00 AM to kick off the Vote for Change effort in New Mexico.
Arrive a little before 9:00 AM for free coffee, juice, donuts, etc., and there will be voter registration training for those new to the process. Participants will fan out to do voter registration throughout the county. Anyone interested in participating may contact Ana Canales at firstname.lastname@example.org or 515-9662, or click to RSVP for the event online.
Similar events will continue through the November election in all 50 states, including New Mexico. Recent voter registration drives organized by the Obama campaign have helped in gaining more than 200,000 new Democratic registrations in Pennsylvania, more than 165,000 new Democrats in North Carolina, and more than 150,000 new Democrats in Indiana.
Message from Michelle Obama about Vote for Change:
In every state across the country, there are thousands of qualified voters who are not registered to vote. Some believe their vote doesn't matter, some have been actively disenfranchised, and some have been overlooked or excluded by a broken system that has lost touch with the concerns of ordinary Americans. Barack and I entered this race because we believe there's a chance to change that.
From the beginning, our goal has been to reach out to people of all races, ages, and backgrounds and bring them back into the political process. We must use the rare opportunity we have right now to bring people together and make this a better country for all Americans. That's why I'm excited to announce a 50-state voter registration and mobilization drive we're calling Vote for Change.
Beginning with a nationwide kick-off on Saturday, May 10th, more than 100 Vote for Change events will take place in every state, organized by our dedicated volunteers who are leading this campaign for change in their own communities.
Sign up to get involved now: http://my.barackobama.com/voteforchange
This campaign is about the change in all of us -- it's about demanding that we live in a different world and being ready to fight for the vision that we have for our children. And that starts with being engaged and engaging others. If you're reading this, you're already somewhat engaged in this campaign. But if your experience is anything like mine, you know at least 20 other people who are not engaged, who are not focused on politics, and who may not vote in November.
If we are going to change this country, the change must come from the bottom up. That means reaching out in your community, in your circle of friends, and even in your family. You can help get new people involved in the process so together we can finally solve the problems that this country faces. Join Vote for Change today and start registering and mobilizing voters.
Throughout this campaign, we've seen millions of Americans get involved who have never been interested in politics, never volunteered on a campaign, and many who have never even registered to vote before. And some of our greatest successes have been recent.
Voter registration drives organized and conducted by supporters like you have registered more than 200,000 new Democrats in Pennsylvania, more than 165,000 new Democrats in North Carolina, and more than 150,000 new Democrats in Indiana. Those numbers just scratch the surface of what's possible.
And that's why Barack needs you. He needs regular folks, engaged not just with their dollars, but also with their energy. If you get involved with Vote for Change now, you can help equip enough people in this country with the tools necessary to bring about the kind of change we so desperately need.
Politics in this country can no longer be the way it's been: divided, isolated and cynical. We know in our hearts it can be so much better. We've already come this far, and this nation-wide voter registration and mobilization drive is the next step. Be a part of Vote for Change, bring move voices into the political process, and help America move toward a future filled with hope.