Thursday, February 23, 2006
The Greens: Will They Spoil Patsy's Party? Plus: More On 'The Battle Of The Grandpas,' And: Some Thursday Bottom Lines
Attention all Heather and Patsy fans. Are we sure those two will be the only choices on the November ballot? No, we are not. The NM Green Party (remember them?) could come springing back to life like a dormant virus with fatal effect for Dem Attorney General Madrid who is locked in what is currently a two way battle for the ABQ Congressional seat held by the GOP's Heather Wilson since 98'.
I checked in with longtime Green leader Carol Miller and the news she imparted was not soothing for Madrid.
"The race is is being watched carefully with several potential candidates in the wings. There is strong determination to run against Patricia Madrid...Greens hold her in low regard for her prejudicial interpretations of election law and endless dictates which hurt democracy itself. In addition, Madrid holds many positions opposed by Greens such as the death penalty to universal health care..." scored Miller in her e-mail missive.
A Green could peel vital liberal votes from Patsy providing a crucial cushion for Heather. And the R's know it. Go back to 02' when then NM GOP Chair Dendahl announced an anonymous donor was willing to give $100,000 to any Green candidate who would run in the 1st District race. The Greens rejected the offer.
But the bad blood between Madrid and the Greens over ballot access and other issues lingers. And Madrid & Company will have to live with the tension at least until July 11, the deadline for minor party candidates to file.
WAITING FOR GREEN
The Greens last ran a candidate in the 00' race when they came in with 5% of the vote. Such a vote tally this time would be devastating for Patsy as most political pros think if she does pull the upset it will be by just a point or two.
And smoking the peace pipe with the Greens, if Madrid wanted to, is no easy task. Who do you sit down with? Party members are an independent bunch with their share of gadflies. It appears it will be a long wait and see for the ambitious attorney general.
Meanwhile, this week has been no bowl of cherries for Heather. She was last seen running at an Olympic pace in the opposite direction of President Bush and his hyper-controversial port plans. If the Prez's already weak popularity plunges into the 30's, the political pros say the danger for Heather is being dragged down with him.
And it all adds up to more factors to watch in this must-stay-tuned-race of 2006 where the stakes are not just the ABQ seat, but perhaps control of the U.S. House and thus the future direction of the American nation.
BATTLE OF THE GRANDPAS (CONTINUED)
Well, actually there is only one grandson of a prominent NM politico involved in that hotly contested Dem State House primary on ABQ's West side (Dist. 16) to succeed Rep. Harriet Ruiz. But like ex-State Rep. Bennie Aragon, Pat Baca Sr., a former city councilor and county commissioner, is a grandpa several times over too, but it's his son, Pat Baca Jr., not his grandson seeking the seat. Bennie's grandson, Dominic Aragon, has been door knocking for weeks. Still, there's enough grandfathering going on out there for us to stick to our sensationalism.
Attorney Moe Maestas is the latest entrant in the race. He will work to nail down the liberal vote, but his opponents are already faulting him for being a relative newcomer to the district. Maestas will make it official today and tells me if we insist on calling it the 'Battle of the Grandpas,' we need to note that his dad, former ABQ Journal reporter Frank Maestas is a bona fide grandpa too.
West side activist and businessman Dan Serrano has been in the race for several months and has signed up media consultant David Griffin to fill the mailboxes of local voters. I wonder what Dan's grandpa status is?
So far, this is the only contested Dem House primary in Bernalillo county that we've heard of. Filing day for all the seats statewide is in mid March.
Big Bill did not have to wait until the final moments of the Legislature to know a chunk of his agenda was in big trouble. According to a well-placed Capitol insider, the Guv met with the Senate Democratic caucus about midway thru the contentious session at which the Dem lawmakers fought among themselves giving the Guv an ear full of the divisions among his fellow Dems.....One of our GOP Alligators gives us heads up on who will headline the annual GOP Lincoln Day Dinner March 18. It will be Florida U.S. Senator Mel Martinez, the first Cuban-Amerian in that body. "He sits on the Energy Committee with Sen. Domenici, and they hope that that will draw in the local energy guys in to fill the coffers." Reports our Gator. Tickets go for $150 a pop.
Keep all of u posted on the latest political news in your neck of the woods. Use the e-mail link the top of the page for that and for information on advertising here. We're back tomorrow with a Friday audio blog. See ya' then.
(c)NM POLITICS WITH JOE MONAHAN 2006
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