Saturday, October 22, 2011

Who's Your Senator? New Mexico Edition

The Honorable Gentlewoman B
The Honorable Gentleman A

The Honorable Gentleman D
The Honorable Gentleman C

Answers after the jump:
A is Senator Tom Udall. Yes. He's the one I had lunch with a few years ago when he was New Mexico Attorney General. A really nice guy in person - and from a Mormon background.

B is former Congresswoman and wanna-be Senator Heather Wilson. I've met her a couple of times mostly memorably as recorded here. (I still have that flag).

C is retiring-before-he-gets-to-old Senator Jeff Bingaman. (I haven't met him.)

D is Congressman and maybe future Senator Martin Heinrich. Good grief! This guy looks like Superman or something!. How can he lose?

With the retirement of long-time moderate Democratic Senator Jeff Bingaman, New Mexico will be one of those hotly contested races for the Republicans to try and pick up a Senate seat to gain a majority or at least maintain their ability to filibuster everything to stalemate under current Senate rules. Wilson appears to be leading for the Republican nomination and Heinrich for the Democratic. New Mexico is a swing state and could go either way for President too. New Mexicans are unlikely to forget that Heather's last name starts with a "W" as she was one of the biggest proponents of the war in Iraq - even though I tried to tell her it was not a good idea. (She didn't listen to me.) I don't know much about Heinrich. It looks like he's got a really good shot at it. 

Heather Wilson is a nice enough person as people go. I had a few casual conversations with her in the Albuquerque Sunport (Airport) while waiting for flights back to DC. I was, of course, very careful to keep it light as I was in official government travel capacity on those occasions. I was even polite, as was she, when we had our brief conversation about the Iraq War (on my lunch break) referenced above.

With the large Hispanic voting block in New Mexico being written off by the Republicans trying to out-debate each other on who will tougher on immigrants, I don't see how the Democrats can lose NM this go around. Tea Party Governor Susana Martinez is also having a bit of trouble after having to admit that her grandparents entered the country illegally even as she was attempting to enact harsher citizenship requirements on the issuance of drivers licenses. I haven't seen any polling on her popularity, but maybe some of my New Mexican readers can fill me in. I still have a hard time believing that tea party officials with their inherently contradictory and often self-fulfilling political philosophy that "government is bad" will be successful at governing in the long term.

Maybe New Mexico will prove me wrong.

Addendum, November 5, 2011:
Hat tip to Phil B., who informs on his blog that Tom Udall has introduced a Constitutional Amendment to allow Congress and the states to regulate campaign contributions in an attempt to overturn Citizens United. Way to go, Tom!

1 comment:

  1. Wilson is damaged goods and Heinrich is a popular Congressman ...


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