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Monday, June 27, 2011

Garcia Call Girl Case: Will Politics & Sex Intersect? 1,400 Nervous Guys On "The List," Plus: Wilson's Worry And Marty's Money 

The way politics and sex intersect these days it's no wonder there's titillating talk over who the 1,400 clients are of a busted call girl ring that has former UNM president, professor emeritus and longtime political analyst Chris Garcia charged with promoting prostitution.

Given Garcia's pedigree are there politicians on that list who are now shaking in their boots over the prospect of being outed as call girl clients of the now notorious Southwest Companions site? How about business leaders? The clients are said to be "respectable" members of the community who Garcia and his cohorts allegedly assisted in obtaining worry-free, but paid for sex.

The Legal Beagles we consult are cautious about whether the list of clients will ever see the light of the day. Releasing names could risk lawsuits against the city if mistakes were made. Also, it may not be necessary to make the list public in order to get convictions in the case. Still, there must be a lot of nervous guys around town.

Reports say the call girl ring was charging anywhere from $200 to $10,000 for sex. The "respectable" clients were apparently also well-heeled. That raises the question of who was making the money. Police say it was mainly about the sex for Garcia. But with those prices someone--in addition to the call girls--was making money.

Meanwhile, Garcia, whose now infamous Internet handle was "BurquePops," took another hit when KRQE-TV reported sex toys were found in his UNM office where he holds forth as a professor emeritus. The report also stated that a list of apparent prostitutes with performance ratings next to their names was also found.

And what if there were a big political name or two among the 1,400 patrons? Would that mean the end of that person's political career? Louisiana Senator David Vitter survived a brush with a prostitute scandal as did Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank.

Not that of any that is much comfort to any New Mexico politicos who are being kept up at night over "The List."

WILSON'S WORRY

We've been telling you of the conservative unease over the prospect of former ABQ GOP Congresswoman Heather Wilson becoming the party's 2012 US Senate nominee and now that unease is getting publicly expressed. Not good for Heather. Take a look at this from GOP Sen. Jim DeMint, the self-appointed and powerful watchdog of all things conservative:

DeMint said he plans to get involved, once again, in Republican primaries for the 2012 elections. One race he has his eye on is the open Senate seat in New Mexico, which is being vacated by retiring Democratic Sen. Jeff Bingaman. Republican leaders have recruited former Rep. Heather Wilson to run, but she faces a challenge against the more conservative John Sanchez, New Mexico's lieutenant governor. "She's a friend, but we've talked to her and I don't think Heather's going to be thought of as a conservative, and she's got a good opponent," DeMint said. "We may get involved with that race, but we haven't made a final decision. I won't commit, at this point, but I think we're going to have a strong conservative there."

DeMint's political action committee boasts of backing six conservative GOP primary Senate winners in the 2010 cycle. The PAC raised over $9 million and is busy raising funds for 2012. Will some of that money be used for hard-hitting anti-Heather TV ads next year?

DeMint's hesitation is a bit of a breather for Heather. Maybe John Sanchez's reluctance to embrace the Ryan Medicare plan is keeping him on hold. Or maybe DeMint is just waiting for the right moment to drop the shoe on Heather.

But even if DeMint's group were to hold back, there are many others that are waiting to mix it up with Heather--and they will. Don't say we didn't tell you.

MARTY MOVEMENT

Now that the Alligators report that former ABQ Mayor Marty Chavez is preparing his entry into the race for the Dem nomination for the ABQ House seat in 2012, the analysis begins of where Chavez will get the money to finance his run. Insiders think about $500,000 is a good goal for Chavez for the primary which will surely feature State. Sen. Eric Griego who has already announced and maybe another major candidate or two. From the email:

Chavez is close to (former Vice-President) Al Gore so you can look for a big fundraising event, maybe more with Gore as the headliner. Don't know what enviro has a bigger name than Al Gore. Marty may pick up some money from some of the enviro groups like Defenders of Wildlife Fund, but will it be enough to make up for tough fundraising ahead at home in NM? Probably not.


Also, Chavez will probably stick to his normal crowd and ask former Ambassador Ed Romero to head up his fundraising. Romero was on board for Marty's short-lived run for Governor.
While he is at. Chavez needs to try and salvage his relationship with the Democratic congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) and try to get them on board. Right now the two are as cold as ice.

Well, Chavez insiders say that he has made some progress with the DCCC. One of them reported he had a meeting this weekend with Rep. Steve Israel, head of the DCCC as well as senior members of the congressional Hispanic caucus. They said the atmosphere was not frosty.

MANY CASES?

Maybe they count these things differently in California where the new executive director of the NM GOP came in from, but we don't quite understand Bryan Watkins assertion that "there are many examples of voter fraud in New Mexico." In an op-ed piece, he goes on to disclose two such cases of fraud--one dating back nearly 20 years.

According to our dictionary "many" means "a large number." Tell you what, Bryan. You produce a dozen cases of documented voter fraud that resulted in court convictions in New Mexico in the last dozen years and you get a complimentary Alligator lunch. Otherwise, please report to education secretary Skandera for your remedial math lesson.

This is the home of New Mexico politics.

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