Wednesday, July 20, 2005
05' ABQ Mayor's Race Claims Another Victim, Plus: The Campaign Money Chase, It's Your Dog Days Blog; Ice Cubes Included
The already nasty 2005 ABQ mayoral race has claimed another victim. First it was Mayor Marty campaign manager Bridget Cusick hitting the road after clashing with campaign Alligators. Now it's the R's turn. Tammy Forester, executive director of the Bernalillo County Republican Party, is out the door as a result of her involvement in the campaign, according to sources knee-deep in the action. "Tammy was axed by(county chair) Ken Zangara because she got mixed up with last Friday's breakfast for Marty. She let people know about the event and that apparently set off Zangara and company who felt the breakfast hosted by a group of R's and featuring the Democrat mayor was an act of betrayal," explained our source.
The informal breakfast has been going on for a number of years, previously hosted by R activist Seth Heath and now in other hands. But this being an election year our sources report there were some anti-Marty plants placed at the event who baited him. The mayor ended up calling Republicans "rich folks." The state GOP (the Brad Winter campaign in drag) then let loose with a news release blasting the mayor, who refused to rescind his statement. Supporters of the breakfast point out that R Winter had been invited to appear the following week and taking it out on Tammy was unfair.
"This is still a party with battling personalities and factions. Marty probably should have begged off the event and spared himself, but he stepped into a lion's den known as the split Republican party. He was zinged, but Tammy was downright burned. It's really a shame," commented our knee-deep source.
So far, the mayoral campaign has been conducted on the 8th grade level. (Eric Griego and Judy Espinosa excepted) Maybe by the time the voters are paying attention in September the maturity level will improve.
Meanwhile, inquiring minds want to know what to make of Brad Winter raising just $42,000 for his mayoral bid in his opening month. Is it disappointing? Did he come up short? I'd say a little yes to both queries.
Remember, Winter will be the only R on the ballot and there is a default vote that will go to him of probably 20%, even if he doesn't have gazillions of dollars. He will need a couple of hundred thousand more to get the rest of his vote, so his next round of fundraising is critical. Insiders at the Winter campaign were hoping to raise $100 grand the first month, but ran up against Mayor Marty's money machine which took in over $270K in the last three months, not to mention Big Bill's case collectors who are also on the stump raising millions for his 06'.
As much as it repluses him, Councilor Winter is going to have to hit the phones even harder if he is going to make a race of this thing. And he's going to have to come forth with a message that does not involve the competing viewpoints of the war-torn state GOP. Don't say we didn't tell you.
A BOTTOM LINE
If you don't learn to laugh at trouble, you won't have anything to laugh at when you are old. (Thanks to Tony Olmi) Back tomorrow with more. Keep us posted with those emails and thanks for stopping by.
(c)NM POLITICS WITH JOE MONAHAN 2005
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