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Thursday, July 05, 2012

Hispanic Independents, Barnett On Fox News And Readers Comment On The Campaign Trail 

Welcome back from the holiday. Let's check in on the 2012 campaign trail....

Hispanics may most often vote Dem, but over half of them say they are political independents. From Gallup:

A majority of U.S. Hispanics identify as political independents (51%)  rather than as Democrats (32%) or Republicans (11%). However, once their  partisan leanings are taken into account, most Hispanics affiliate with  the Democratic Party (52%) rather than the Republican Party (23%). Both  sets of numbers shift more decisively in the Democrats' favor among the  roughly half of U.S. Hispanics who are registered to vote.

And the AP in NM comes with this take on Hispanic voters:

The reasons that Hispanics give for choosing between Obama and Romneyare just as diverse as the countries that they or their ancestors once called home, suggesting there's no one-size-fits-all approach to  courting the nation's fastest-growing minority group.

CAMPAIGN EXCITEMENT

Here's reader Joe Campos down in Valencia County getting very pumped about Dem State Senate Majority Leader Michael Sanchez surviving his challenge from Republican David Chavez:

I was at an organizational meeting for Valencia County Democrats  in Los Lunas. State Senator Micheal Sanchez gave a fiery speech pumping up the  crowd. I have heard the Senator speak before, but last night was  different. He spoke from the heart and had everyone clapping and  hollering with every issue that he supports. Look out Susana, it looks  like she stirred up a hornets nest here in Valencia County and she has  the Senator fighting mad! You could even add the Senator's name to the  list with Gary, Sam and Hector for governor in 2014 after last night's performance!

Sanchez has in the past toyed with running for Governor, but has not been on the '14 radar. As for his race, he is favored, but the Guv's enmity toward him could mean major campaign bucks will go to Chavez from SusanaPAC and other sources. Sanchez will be kept busy.

BARNETT ON FOX

You hear about lobbyist/lawyer and former NM GOP National committeeman Mickey Barnett and the influence he has with the Martinez administration, but you don't often see him. Readers send in this Fox News interview that features Barnett being interviewed by John Stoessel about his role as a commissioner on the US Postal Service's Board of Governors.

NOT SO STRONG?

Reader Jackson Griffin takes note of a recent blog in which we said Republican attorney Chris Saucedo could take the House District 15 seat in ABQ. He says:

He may be going strong now but voters aren't going to be too happy to hear that his law partner is Mo Chavez, a Democrat and former state superintendent of insurance. 

Saucedo is running against Dem Emily Kane. The seat is being vacated by Rep. Bill O'Neill who is seeking the Senate seat being vacated by Dede Feldman. No R filed for the seat so O'Neill heads to Santa Fe in January.

DUNN VS. GRIEGO

A reader wants to know whey we have pegged Dem State Sen. Phil Griego as the favorite in his bid for re-election against Aubrey Dunn, Jr. They write:

In previous posts you mentioned  that Phil has a lock on the seat. I am not entirely convinced. Wasn't his seat re-districted to include more rural Anglo areas that could help Dunn? I remember he was one of Big Bill's main apologists and carried lots of water for Richardson.  Now his  cozying up with Gov. Martinez is somewhat snake-like. What say you?

First, let's say that Griego, who received unsolicited help in his Dem primary from the Susana-affiliated Reform NM PAC, says he is not going to be cozying up with the administration. As for the district, checking the stats we find that it us made up of about 57% Hispanics and has a performance rating of 56.7% Democrat. That's why we pegged Griego as the favorite over Dunn.

THE DOUBLE DIPPERS

Reader Dan Klein says the recent proposal to reform the Public Employee Retirement Association pension fund (PERA) has an important omission:

Nothing in this proposal sunsets the current double dippers. As we both know there are around 2,000 double dippers who were grandfathered in when the law was repealed in 2010.  The majority of these double dippers are making six figures (between pension and their old government job). We must sunset these people if we want to make PERA fair.

A double-dipper is a state employee who is retired, receives a pension but then goes back to work for the state and and collects both a salary as well as the pension. The PERA reforms must win the approval of the Legislature.

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