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Thursday, May 29, 2008

SD 17: Tim Keller Earning Unprecedented Dem Support

Tim Keller (L) with Rey Garduno at campaign event

Do you live in NM Senate District 17 in Albuquerque's SE Heights? Click here for a map of the District or visit this page at the website of the Bernalillo County and enter your address to determine your District. If you're a registered District 17 Democrat, it's incredibly important that you get out and vote in the Democratic primary on June 3rd.

The primary features a heated battle between reformer Tim Keller and long-time incumbent Shannon Robinson. Robinson has been the focus of a growing number of news reports highlighting his highly questionable actions related to getting funding for the UNM Rugby Club he coaches. He's also been called on neglecting the needs of his District while focusing instead on serving the powerful.

This is a race that pits a change candidate who will fight to clean up government and work hard to bring positive improvements to his District against an insider who's gotten way too comfortable in his seat and who fights hardest for the well-connected and the status quo. Given the strongly Democratic demographics of Senate District 17, whoever wins the Dem primary will no doubt take the seat.

With the primary election nearing, challenger Tim Keller has earned the endorsement of key progressive Democrats, neighborhood and community leaders, as well as nearly a dozen Democratic groups in his run in the Democratic Primary for State Senate in District 17.

"The support Tim has received is unprecedented for a challenger," says veteran Democratic leader Richard Romero. "To me, it says that people believe that Tim represents democratic values of integrity and ethics. The voters in his district are looking for this sort of change."

Tim is also endorsed by Rey Garduno, the Albuquerque City Councilor who represents half of the district, and State Senator Jerry Ortiz y Pino.

Organizations that have endorsed Tim include:

  • Albuquerque Teachers Federation
  • National Educational Association, New Mexico
  • New Mexico Professional Firefighters Association
  • Conservation Voters New Mexico
  • DFA-Democracy for New Mexico
  • ACORN, New Mexico
  • Hispano Round Table de Nuevo México
  • New Mexico Progressive Action
  • Albuquerque Area Firefighters Local 244
  • Sierra Club

Local neighborhood leaders who have endorsed Tim are:

  • Joanne Landry, Trumbull Neighborhood Association President
  • Enrique Cardiel, Neighborhood Leader, South San Pedro
  • Nancy Bearce, District 6 Neighborhood Coalition President
  • Charlie Bennet, Democrat Ward Chair, La Mesa Neighborhood

Tim Keller, a progressive Democrat from Albuquerque, is active in the Democrat Party, serving as a Ward Chair and as the Bernalillo County Party Parliamentarian. More can be found about Tim Keller at his website. Tim can be reached at tk@timkellerfornewmexico.com.

Whether you live in Tim's District or not, consider helping out with canvassing and phone banking in the final days of the campaign and on election day.

To see our previous posts about Tim Keller, visit our legislative race archive.

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May 29, 2008 at 04:56 PM in 2008 NM State Legislature Races | Permalink | Comments (0)

PRC 1: Jason Marks Airs TV Ad

Jason Marks, who's running in the Dem primary for a second term on the Public Regulation Commmission in District 1, is airing a TV ad (above) touting his impressive achievements in his first term. Marks is the current chair of the PRC. Known as a strong supporter of clean, renewable energy, Marks has earned high marks in many quarters and on both sides of the aisle for his advocacy on the part of consumers and his tough but fair negotiating skills. You can read what people are saying about Marks here.

Marks is one of my favorite public servants and he's decided to run this time using New Mexico's public campaign financing program enacted a couple years ago for PRC candidates. In other words, he won't be beholden to special interests because he won't be seeking high-dollar campaign contributions from all the wrong people.

Marks will be free to keep on representing the people, while giving a fair shake to the business community. He can keep fighting to do what's right when he deals with the complicated and often controversial issues that come before the PRC -- without pressure from those who've given large donations to his camapaign. He can continue to apply common sense and maintain high ethical standards when working to meet the challenges faced by the PRC in terms of energy, telecommunications, insurance, water, transportation and other important regulatory matters.

Please take the time to vote for Jason Marks for PRC in District 1 in the June 3rd primary next Tuesday to demonstrate strong Dem support for his candidacy. Then think about getting involved in Marks' general election campaign where he'll face a tough -- and probably nasty -- GOP challenge from either Alan Reed or Tim Cummins. The Repubs don't like public servants who serve the public instead of the vested interests. But we do! Get involved.

To see our previous coverage of Jason Marks' re-election campaign, visit our archive.

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May 29, 2008 at 02:54 PM in 2008 PRC Election | Permalink | Comments (0)

NM-01: alibi Endorses Martin Heinrich; Vote for Martin on Blue America

Heinrichace_2The alibi, Albuquerque's alternative weekly newspaper, endorsed Martin Heinrich for Congress in New Mexico's First District Dem primary. You should read the whole thing, but here's an excerpt:

It's mainly Heinrich's time in the City Council that earns him our endorsement. That time was relatively brief—he was voted into office in 2003 and served a four-year term, one year of which as Council president. But during those four years, Heinrich accomplished more than some two- or three-term councilors, and through it all managed to hold on to his integrity.

Heinrich always demonstrated a vast reserve of knowledge and accountability on city issues. And he did an admirable job of never backing down against the Mayor's Office.These things matter, because we believe the exceptional qualities Heinrich displayed in his previous office will translate into the next.

... In the end, we think Heinrich would make an excellent congressman. He's demonstrated that he can work with people from a wide political spectrum and stand out among a crowd. He's proven himself a true progressive. He strikes us as honest. And it is with great pleasure that we give him our endorsement.

Donate $1.01 and Vote for Heinrich
By the way, Martin was recently endorsed as a Blue America candidate, backed by the ActBlue PAC organized by national bloggers DownWithTyranny, Firedoglake, Crooks and Liars and digby on Hullaballoo. This week Howie Klein of DownWithTyranny is Air America radio's guest blogger, and he's getting paid for his work. Because Howie doesn't believe in taking money for what he describes as "defending the Constitution," he'll be donating what he earns to one of the candidates on Blue America. The candidate who gets the bucks will be chosen by blog readers. This means you. Here's how:

To vote in Howie's , all you have to do is donate at least a dollar to a candidate on the Blue America page and add one cent to your contribution so Howie knows it's a vote. Of course you're urged to vote for Martin Heinrich by doing just that. Click here to give $1.01 or any amount you can afford. Just be sure to add the penny to your total so it will count as a vote for Martin. One vote per person. Do it now.

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May 29, 2008 at 12:38 PM in NM-01 Congressional Seat 2008 | Permalink | Comments (0)

DPNM Hosts 2008 Primary Night Watch Party

The Democratic Party of New Mexico will be holding a Primary Night Watch Party on June 3rd, at the Albuquerque Convention Center. The event is free and open to the public. We expect most of the Democratic candidates, including Congressman Tom Udall, to attend. Polls close at 7:00 PM. Make sure you vote in the primary and then come on down to celebrate our victories:

Who:  New Mexico Democratic Party
What:  Primary Election Night Party
When:  6:00 PM to 11:00 PM, Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Where:  Albuquerque Convention Center
San Miguel Room (2nd Floor - East Complex)
401 2nd Street NW , Albuquerque

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May 29, 2008 at 11:42 AM in Democratic Party, Events, Local Politics | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

NM-02, NM-03: Richardson Endorses Teague, Luján

Governor Bill Richardson officially announced two endorsements today in New Mexico's Congressional Dem primary races in NM-02 and NM-03. He didn't make any endorsement in NM-01, where Martin Heinrich has a double digit lead according to recent polling. What does this tell us? That the races in the Second and Third Districts must be mighty close and the candidates he endorsed likely felt they needed to convince the Governor to publicly support them as the days tick down toward the June 3rd primary. Their primary rivals are breathing down their necks.

Richardson backed Harry Teague in the 2nd Congressional District, saying that "Teague is the right person to carry the Democratic banner into the general election."

"Harry Teague is a successful businessman and community leader with moderate views who should be able to wind the general election," Governor Bill Richardson said. "I worked with Harry Teague to reinvigorate and diversify the economy in Southeastern New Mexico. I know Harry will use that experience to create jobs and represent the mostly rural communities of Southern New Mexico in Congress."

No response yet from the Bill McCamley campaign, but I have one -- go McCamley! P.S. Go check out post on McCamley's bold new ad. I also see that Mr. Heath has an additional quote from Richardson's camp about the endorsement in NM-02:

“The decision to endorse was a tough one. The governor fully supports Harry Teague, but he’s also very big on Bill McCamley, who he believes has great potential to be a political leader in the future,” Gallegos said.

In the 3rd Congressional District up north, where Richardson once served as a Congressman, the Governor endorsed Ben. R. Luján, Jr:

"As someone who knows this district well - as a Congressman and now as Governor - I believe Ben Ray Luján is the most qualified candidate and is best prepared to represent the diverse communities that stretch across northern and eastern New Mexico," Governor Bill Richardson said.

"I am also proud to endorse a candidate who has taken the high road against negative and unnecessary political attacks from some of his opponents," Governor Richardson said. "I trust Ben Ray Luján as the candidate who will stand up for New Mexico. He has worked hard on the Public Regulation Commission to serve the people of New Mexico. No other candidate can match his record of fighting for consumers, increasing renewable energy production and creating regional solutions to climate change."

Don Wiviott's campaign responded to the endorsement of Luján in a statement:

"While Wiviott has nothing but respect for the Governor, this endorsement comes as no surprise. It is well known that the Speaker and the Governor have a close relationship, and that Don Wiviott is not a political insider or a career politician. The only endorsement that matters in this race is the support of Third District voters."

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May 28, 2008 at 04:39 PM in NM-02 Congressional Race 2008, NM-03 Congressional Seat 2008 | Permalink | Comments (2)

Local Vet Calls McCain Memorial Day Event in ABQ a 'Republican Pep Rally"

More on that below, but first watch Santa Fe Reporter writer Dave Maass take MoveOn's Bush-McCain Challenge at the Plaza in Santa Fe. The Challenge is happening in locales all over America today, drawing attention to the similarities between John McCain and George Bush. Hard to tell 'em apart, eh Dave? Speaking of the Santa Fe Reporter, you might want to check out their guide to the June 3rd primary election, which includes endorsements for all the Santa Fe area races. One, in particular, is creating some controversy. Can you guess which one?

Onward. Have you seen this story? Quote:

As he spoke to a Memorial Day crowd of about 1,000, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee was joined by New Mexico Republican Sen. Pete Domenici and Rep. Steve Pearce and Rep. Heather Wilson, who are running for Domenici's soon-to-be-vacant seat.

[Bruce] Clark, a former Marine whose son Bradley Clark is serving in the U.S. Army in Iraq, said he showed up at the event to protest what he called "this criminal war" and McCain's support of it.

But though it was a public event on public property, all signs of dissent were quashed by the heavy presence of APD officers and agents from the Secret Service, he said.

"We were very intimidated," he said.

Many of you may remember Bruce Clark's emotionally powerful and personal speech against the Iraq occupation and the shredding of the U.S. Constitution at last year's Iraq Summer town hall. He's still at it.

How very sad that the powers behind a supposedly public event -- not a campaign event -- refused to allow even veterans to exercise their constitutional rights to peaceable assembly and free speech. You'd think that McCain, who constantly proclaims how much he respects vets and what they fought for in terms of American freedoms, would be supportive of the constitution and free expression by veterans. Then again, how much is he really for the vets when push comes to shove?

McCain was absent when the Senate was voting on the New GI Bill that would expand veterans' benefits for college tuition. He was in California, at the home of San Diego Chargers owner Alex Spanos, attending a $25,000 a couple fundraiser for his presidential bid. Of course McCain doesn't support the New GI Bill anyway, preferring a bill he sponsored that would require members of the military to serve at least 12 years before getting the expanded benefits.

Unfortunately, this isn't the first time McCain has voted against the interests of veterans:

As a veteran and former prisoner of war, Sen. McCain should know better than anyone the extent of difficulty our soldiers can face upon returning home after combat, she said.

Yet a study of Congressional voting records shows that, twice since the beginning of the Iraq War, McCain has voted against federal Veteran's Administration allocations that would raise benefits for veterans.

Go read the rest.

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May 28, 2008 at 03:14 PM in 2008 General Presidential Election, Civil Liberties, Veterans | Permalink | Comments (1)

NM Dem Women Host National Convention in ABQ; Guests Include Chelsea Clinton, Valerie Plame

KickingdonkeyFrom DPBC e-News: The Democratic Women of New Mexico will host the National Federation of Democratic Women in Albuquerque on Wednesday, May 28th to Sunday, June 1st, 2008 at the Albuquerque Marriott Hotel.

The attendees will be touring Santa Fe and Acoma on Wednesday and Thursday.

On Thursday evening, May 29th from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM, there will be a "Wild West Welcome" party at the Albuquerque Marriott. Everyone is invited to attend. Tickets are $50.00 per person and available at the door. Nominated by Democratic Women of New Mexico and receiving the NFDW award for "Outstanding Elected Democratic Women Official" will be will be our own Lt. Governor Diane Denish.

On Friday, May 30th, the NFDW 37th Annual Convention begins with a welcome from Mayor Martin Chavez beginning at 9 AM at the Marriott Hotel. The luncheon's featured speaker is Valerie Plame Wilson. On Friday evening, Chelsea Clinton will also be on hand to "meet and greet" the attendees.

There will also be a special "meet and greet" Friday with the Young Democrats at the Marriott Hotel.  Tickets for the YD event are required and may be obtained by contacting Antonio Sandoval, NMYD President. The convention attendees will have their "meet and greet" Friday at the Balloon Fiesta Museum.

In addition to the featured speakers, there will be workshops by well-known New Mexico authors and experts to include: Sharon Niederman, Secretary of State Mary Herrera, Dr. Martha Burk and Cathy Napier, DNC Secretary Alice Germond and Sharon Grosfeld, DNC Executive Director for the Women's Leadership Forum, Expo New Mexico Director, Judith Espinosa and many others.

On Saturday, May 31st, 2008, Bernadette T. Vadurro, author of the award winning book, "Ameria's Conscience: Facing Threats to Democracy, the Middle Class and Our World," will be the luncheon keynote speaker. Young Democratic Woman, Monica Gomez of Dona Ana County, will be receiving an award for her contribution to the Democratic Party on Saturday. State Treasurer James Lewis and State Auditor Hector Balderas will be on hand Saturday night to address the group and participate in a live auction to include: Southwest Airlines TIckets, a George Bush Pinata, a one of it's kind commemorative donkey.

Registration for the convention is $180.00. Registration forms are available on line at:  www.nfdw.com. For more information:  kathymduffy@aol.com.

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May 28, 2008 at 06:22 AM in Democratic Party, Events, Women's Issues | Permalink | Comments (2)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

NM-01: Darren White Claims Independence from Bush at Bush Fundraiser Today

Darren White's campaign claims that Bush raised $317,000 today in Los Ranchos de Albuquerque -- money that reportedly will be split between White's campaign and the NM GOP. And now we have proof that Darren White will say anything, no matter how silly, to try and gain credibility for his candidacy in NM-01. According to a news release reporting on today's NM fundraiser for White and the GOP with George Bush:

"White said he appreciates the President's willingness to attend the fundraiser, noting that liberal special interests are expected to invest heavily in the campaign of his likely Democrat opponent, who is constantly referred to as the 'darling of the Left."

White, the Republican Bernalillo County sheriff, said he expects the Democrats to spend big on the race.

"The Democrats are poised to nominate a candidate well outside the mainstream of this district. I fully expect the radical left-wing special interest groups to spend millions trying to elect one of their own to Congress. My campaign is about shaking up Washington with strong, independent leadership and I look forward to earning the support of the voters."

Yeah, the kind of "strong, independent leadership" that depends on large donations from extreme right GOP bigwigs still lured by the Bush mystique, whatever that is. Oh, and the only person who keeps referring to White's opponent as a 'darling of the Left' is our infamous rumor-blogger and stealth Republican, Joe Monahan. You remember Joe. He's the guy who mocks efforts to pass ethics and campaign finance reform in the NM legislature because his "Alligators" like it just the way it is in Santa Fe and, obviously, in Washington too.

Everyone I know refers to Martin Heinrich as a friend of ordinary, hard-working New Mexicans. Maybe because he has fought tooth and nail for things like a raise in the minimum wage while Bush devotees like Darren White fight just as hard against such measures.

Here's what Martin Heinrich had to say about Bush's visit for White:

Of course, the height of irony is that the Darren White, the man who is going to benefit to the tune of $300,000+ and who served as the President's 2004 Bernalillo County campaign chair, is the same man who now claims to be 'independent' from President Bush and his failed policies. Don't believe it.

The truth is that President Bush is taking the time to come to Albuquerque to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for Darren White because he knows that White is a George Bush Republican - the kind of Republican who will support endless war in Iraq, failed economic policies, big oil giveaways and roll backs to our Constitutional liberties.

Now's the time to let Martin know we've got his back in this campaign. Please donate what you can and consider volunteering right now for Heinrich's campaign. We can't let a Bush Republican like Darren White keep the Bush agenda alive in Washington and right here in New Mexico.

Bush Heads to AZ for McCain
One more thing: George Bush now heads over to Arizona to campaign for another "independent" Republican -- John McCain. I guess right-wingers llike White and McCain are only ashamed to be with Bush in public. They seem entirely comfortable pushing his agenda and taking the money of his wealthy friends.

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May 27, 2008 at 04:54 PM | Permalink | Comments (9)

Video: DPNM Protests Bush Fundraiser for GOP & White

The Tom Udall campaign liveblogged the Dem Party of New Mexico's demonstration in Los Ranchos de Albuquerque today protesting George Bush's fundraiser for NM-01 candidate Darren White and the state GOP. Click to see the recorded video of the event. Participants included reps from the AFL-CIO, AFSCME, Tom Udall's campaign and UNM College Dems, as well as State Dem Party chair Brian Colon, NM-01 Dem Congressional candidate Martin Heinrich and Janice Saxton, Dem candidate in NM House District 22. KRQE News 13 has this video of Bush's arrival in Albuquerque and the protest in Los Ranchos de Albuquerque.

A major complaint raised by demonstrators centered on Bush's promise to veto the new GI Bill that would expand veterans' benefits and support every vet who's served since 9-11 with expanded financial support for a college education. John McCain, the presumed GOP nominee for prez, is also against the new GI Bill. I guess he supports vets, but only when George Bush tells him it's ok. A couple of quotes from participants about the close relationship between White and Bush:

DPNM Chair Brian Colon: "You know, Darren has been critical of the administration but he got a lot less critical when he had the opportunity to get some money from Bush's supporters. "That's not acceptable."

NM-01 candidate Martin Heinrich: "It's disappointing to see Darren White continue to embrace the president at a time when the administration's failed policies are hurting New Mexico families."

By the way, the Udall campaign is seeking 1000 donations between now and when the polls close for the primary election on June 3rd to offset the effects of the big bucks being raised today in New Mexico for Republican candidates. You know what to do.

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May 27, 2008 at 02:28 PM in 2008 NM Senate Race, 2008 Presidential Primary, Democratic Party, Labor, NM-01 Congressional Seat 2008, Republican Party | Permalink | Comments (3)

NM-01: Heinrich Responds to Bush Fundraiser for White

Do your part to counter Bush Repub partying ... After a fundraiser for Darren White here today, Bush heads to AZ to raise money for his pal John McCain

Martin Heinrich, running for the Dem Congressional nomination in NM-01, is hitting back at George Bush's fundraising with GOP elites at a residence in Los Ranchos de Albuquerque today by reaching out to the national and local netroots/grassroots for support. Bush is sneaking into town today to attend a private, no-press-allowed, $1000-per-person event to raise campaign funds for long-time buddy Darren White, the presumptive Repub Congressional candidate in NM-01, and the State Repub Party's so-called Victory Fund.

It's expected that the event will raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for White and the GOP. As we all know by now, Darren White is a Bush-clone supreme, having served as Bush's campaign chair in Bernalillo County in 2004 and having been selected to accompany Bush to the podium for his nomination at the RNC Convention that year. His positions support the continuation of the Bush agenda even when Bush will be gone from the White House. We can't have that, can we? What we can do:

First, listen in today at Noon Mountain time, Heinrich will be interviewed for 45 minutes by Adam Lambert and David Atkinson on a Blog Talk Radio Heading Left show hosted by ePluribus Radio. Click here to listen online.

Next, head over to the nationally prominent blog, Crooks and Liars, at 3:00 PM today Mountain time, to lend some local flavor to Heinrich's live blog there.

Last, but certainly not least, donate a few bucks to Martin Heinrich's campaign. Let's show them what people-powered politics can do, one small donatiion at a time, to give Martin what he need to win. Add a donation you can afford to the page and support the efforts to turn New Mexico as blue as our azure skies this election cycle.

P.S. Double your impact by adding $.01 to every donation that you make this week. DownWithTyranny, this week's guest blogger at Air America, is donating his Air America check to the candidate that picks up the most online contributions with $.01 added. So, add a penny to your contribution and help Heinrich earn an additional donation!

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May 27, 2008 at 11:55 AM in NM-01 Congressional Seat 2008, Republican Party | Permalink | Comments (0)