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Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Did The DA Do Herself in? Brandenburg Admission Of Blame In Cop Killing Case Weighed, Plus: Drought Watch And Madmen And The Blog 

Did the DA do herself in? By accepting partial blame for a plea deal that kept accused cop killer Andrew Romero on the streets, BernCo District Attorney Kari Brandenburg gave two announced candidates for the Dem DA nomination next year reason to campaign even harder.

Brandenburg has said she has not made up her mind about seeking an unprecedented fifth, four year term. Reader Valerie Kimble is among those who think the fallout from the Romero case could be enough to push her to the sidelines:

There's been lots of airtime and emotion spent in excoriating the already much-maligned District Attorney. Supposedly fearful for her personal safety and now the target of a whole lot of frustration and anger, if I were Brandenburg I'd fill out my current term and then pack my bags. Any re-election hopes she might have clung to appear to be the least of her woes. 

Politics can change fast. Brandenburg's split with APD after she charged two officers in the fatal shooting of homeless camper James Boyd had her redefining herself. Now events have taken over, making her re-election decision all the tougher.

Dems Ed Perea and Raul Torrez have both launched early DA campaigns. No Republican is in yet, but the flap over the fatal police shooting in Rio Rancho as well as the continued chaos at APD would seem to give a law and order R an opening.

DROUGHT WATCH

Drought is nothing to laugh at but when you see news like this, it gives cause for optimism about NM's challenge:

As California and other western areas of the United States grapple with an extreme drought, a revolution has taken place (in Israel).  A major national effort to desalinate Mediterranean seawater and to recycle wastewater has provided the country with enough water for all its needs, even during severe droughts. More than 50 percent of the water for Israeli households, agriculture and industry is now artificially produced. . . 

GOP ACTION

While the House Dems hold an ABQ  fundraiser Thursday in their effort to get back into the majority in '16, new House Majority Leader Nate Gentry of ABQ is also not wasting any time gearing up for the still long off election. He will hold a fundraiser next Wednesday hosted by ABQ Mayor Berry and others, including well-know architect Dale Dekker.

Gentry's district is Republican but it is changing and in a presidential election year the Dems have a shot to make a race of it. They would need a top-tier candidate and considerable money to do so.

Gentry, an attorney who also wears a political consulting hat, is again expected to be a key player in overall GOP strategy in working to keep the House under Republican control.

TAKING IT BACK

A Dem reader keyed off Tuesday's blog about the state House Dems trying to retake the majority and how the ABQ GOP seats of Conrad James and Sarah Maestas Barnes may be critical to that effort:

Both James and Maestas Barnes are vulnerable if the Dems would hammer away at their support for the common core education agenda. It would chip away from their own GOP base. Of course, if the Dems had a permanent information infrastructure and took local control back from DC consultants who don’t know NM, they’d stand a real chance of recapturing the House and keeping the Senate in 2016.

Some  Dems argue that they could get back the House by taking the seats of Republicans outside of the city they consider vulnerable. They are Reps. Zimmerman and Nunez in the south and Rep. Clahchischilliage in the Northwest.

THE BOTTOM LINES

Forget the multi-tasking, Joe. Wanting to watch the final episode of  the TV series "Madmen" again, we combined that pleasure with Tuesday blogging. And what did we get? Well, something like one of those office messes Don Draper often found himself in.

In an early first draft we blogged that the Dem state House fundraiser in ABQ this week is on Wednesday, even though the invite we posted clearly stated it is this Thursday. We also had a math issue in that early post, saying it would take a Democratic pick up of four seats for the party to retake the state House majority. The correct number is three. To vote in the Mid-Rio Grande Conservancy District election Tuesday you had to be a "landowner" not a "homeowner" as we said. (Election results here.) And not to nitpick, but there is no hyphen in "Maestas Barnes" so we corrected it.

And we thought we were going to miss Madmen.

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