Thursday, March 17, 2005

Welcome To Ground Zero For NM Politics: Pete & Jeff: How Are They Doing? We have The Numbers, Plus: ABQ Mayor's Race Goes To The Dogs 

Being the political junkie you are this will come as no shock. The latest poll assessing the favorables of NM's two U.S. Senators show both of them approaching the stratospheric level of 70%. It hs always struck me as a bit odd that a liberal Democrat, Jeff Bingaman, and a semi-conservative Republican, Pete Domenici, could both maintain such high opinion ratings statewide. New Mexicans like these guys and respect them, and they apparently like having a foot in both political camps in D.C.

The latest polling numbers dropped in my email box were conducted for an environmental group by NM's Research & Polling. Voters who say they have a favorable or somewhat favorable rating of Pete come in at 68%. For Jeff, it's just one point shy of that at 67%. The poll was taken during the last week of January and has a margin of error of + or - 4.4%.

There are a lot more D's than R's in NM so Domenici comes in with a 20% unfavorable number while the Bingaman unfavorable is a low 14%. The numbers are most important to Bingaman who is gearing up for a re-election run in 06.' While Domenici can give Bingaman a ribbing for beating him out by one point in the favorable rankings, Bingaman can always remind Pete that between the two he is the only one to have never lost an election.

The R's, as they should, are starting to downplay Bingaman's strength and say he can be taken. But they still have no top-tier candidate willing to make the move. It seems the possibles who have seen the numbers believe them. Bingaman, who was rumored to be thinking about retiring, put that to rest in mid-February and his bank account now has nearly $400,000, on the way to the multimillions it will take to retain the seat. As for Pete, strange as it may seem, he sent out a fundraising letter about the time Jeff was announcing his plans to seek re-election. The 72 year old has refused to close the door on yet another run in 2008. Hey, with their polling numbers you can understand the rocking chairs don't look too tempting to our senators.


With about six months to go until Election Day in the ABQ mayor's race you can expect the campaign tricks to start. And they have. Check out this site picking on Mayor Marty from a group calling itself "The 1000 friends of Dukes." Dukes is the mayor's dog. ABQ City Councilor Eric Griego is the only announced Chavez opponent thus far. I don't know if he has a dog, but if he does he better hide the little guy. As for Dukes, that's a pretty good name for a write-in candidate, no?

Make our site, WWW.JOEMONAHAN.COM, one of your favorites and e-mail a link to interested friends. Interested in advertising to NM's large political community? E-mail me from the top right of this page, or call 505-243-4059 for details.

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