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Friday, August 18, 2006

She's Once, Twice, Three Times A Liberal; But She Has A Cool Look, Plus: Sex And Money In Campaign 06' 

Nancy Pelosi
The hands-down winner of quote of the week comes from the re-election effort of ABQ GOP Congresswoman Heather Wilson in reaction to Thursday's ABQ visit by U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi on behalf of Wilson's Dem rival, Patricia Madrid. Three "liberals" in just three sentences!

"Nancy Pelosi is a liberal with a liberal agenda and she aggressively recruited Patricia Madrid to run so that they can advance their liberal agenda together," said Wilson's campaign manager, Enrique Carlos Knell.

Maybe we need to put little asterisks in the word lib**al as they do with other well-used swear words, like ba**ard and such.

NM political columnist Jay Miller is already tiring of the political profanity and tagging the Madrid-Wilson race as a real loser.

"Never has the mute button on my TV set gotten such a workout. That race is just plain unpleasant." Laments Miller, author of the syndicated column "Inside the Capitol."

But what about Nancy Pelosi, Jay? I mean, putting politics aside, at 66 years, she still has a look, doesn't she? Tell the truth, you might mute her, but you wouldn't switch channels. OK. I won't go any further. That's already strange enough.

SEXED UP MONEY

The most politically interesting thing about Dem land commissioner hopeful Jim Baca's announcement that he would be returning $10,000 his campaign received from a billionaire charged with soliciting prostitution is that he will pay it back in $1,000 installments; his campaign doesn't have the cash to do it all at once.

That stands in stark contrast to GOP incumbent Land Commissioner Pat Lyons who has over half a million in donations, much of it from the oil and gas industry, to play with. Still, Baca will need a lot less to compete as there is a built in bias in that race towards the Dem.

As for the wayward billionaire, Jeffrey Epstein, rumored to have the largest house in the Santa Fe area at over 25,000 square feet, and charged with soliciting after a scandal broke involving teenaged girls, he also gave to the coffers of Big Bill and Dem attorney general candidate Gary King, both of whom will now shed the cash. Big Bill's $50,000 goes to charity and Gary's $15k will be returned to Epstein.

Earlier this year the Guv and other candidates rushed to return money donated by longtime Dem politico Guy Riordan when his name was associated with the state Treasurer scandal, even though he strongly denied any wrongdoing.

The constant drumbeat of returned contributions and "pay to play allegations" involving both major parties makes a strong case for the often derided notion of public financing of campaigns. Is that idea now at least worthy of debate at the ethics commission the Guv has appointed? Don't hold your breath, but do have a great weekend.

(c)NM POLITICS WITH JOE MONAHAN 2006
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