Wednesday, March 02, 2016

Trump Lays down Super Tuesday Aces As Martinez Sidesteps Question On Her Prez Vote, Local Analyst Says Trump's Got it, Plus: NM Election Results, An Economic Fantasy Land And An Old Name Is New Dunn Operative 

(WaPo Photo)
Donald Trump laid down aces on Super Tuesday after shuffling the political deck like we've never seen a political outsider do.

His sweeping primary victories had establishment Republicans unable to stay in the game, with Gov. Martinez joining the ranks of those unwilling to show their cards and refusing to say whether she would vote for Trump if he is the GOP presidential nominee. But the stakes are only going to get higher in the days ahead as Trump beats one player after another.

The primary game seems unlikely to be impactful for New Mexico which has a June 7 primary. The race should be decided by then but we're starting to wonder. Still, Martinez squirming over Trump brings into sight the November election and the battle for control of the state Legislature.

Her dream is to have the R's take control of the Senate and keep GOP control of the House for the final two years of her term. That dream has always seem distant and with Trump at the top of the ticket, Dems are thinking it would die.

Still, this is the year when the crystal ball gazers have ended up eating glass, or at least most of them. We've been bouncing the presidential ball with former ABQ city councilor and state representative Greg Payne, who is also a veteran political consultant (think Gov. Gary Johnson). The former R turned Dem gave us his prediction two weeks ago that Trump would win the nomination. As Super Tuesday results rolled in we asked Payne, a recent UNM School of Law grad, to keep going out on the limb:

The playbook has been thrown out for this election but there is one aspect that reminds me of 1980. Back then the GOP establishment freaked out when anti-establishment candidate Ronald Reagan steamrolled toward the nomination over their favorite George Bush. Rather than fighting Reagan they managed to get Bush named as VP.  I think that's where the establishment R's need to go this year. With Trump they are dealing with a wild political Mustang that they need to saddle. The grassroots are fed up and any effort to deprive Trump of the nomination will kill any chance they have to beat Clinton. Rubio or Christie are the naturals this year to play the role Bush did with Reagan in 1980.

Thanks, Greg. Campaign '16 is so wild, even the bull riders in Tucumcari are getting a thrill.


They said "no" four years ago but Rio Rancho voters had a change of heart Tuesday and approved a $9 million bond issue to improve roads in the City of Vision. The issue scored about 63% of the vote which Rio Rancho Mayor Greg Hull told us he would support as a voter but stay neutral on as mayor. However, by the end of the campaign Hull was on TV as Mayor sounding pretty much in favor of the issue. . . Larry Abraham, the mayor of the Village of Los Ranchos in the ABQ metro, is one of the longest serving mayors in the state. He was first elected in 2004 and the popular executive added four more years last night, easily defeating his opposition by getting 59% of the vote. . .Santa Fe election results here.


And in news from Fantasy Island:

Kevin Yearout, a board member of the Commercial Real Estate Development Corp. and a Martinez campaign donor, said. . . she “has been instrumental in positively changing the state’s position on some pro-business lists.” Yearout’s company, Yearout Mechanical, was listed as a $10,000 sponsor of the lunch on Monday.

“Through Gov. Martinez’s leadership, we can now see the beginnings of the evolving of the state’s economy from a federal-government-based economy to a market-driven, private-sector economy. Rome was not built in a day and our economy will not change overnight either. Under Gov. Martinez’s leadership we will continue to make significant steps forward to enhance our economy for the betterment of our citizens and our businesses.”

Hey, Kevin, does that mean next time the Cheesecake Factory opens a restaurant here we get 15,000 applicants instead of 10,000? Gotta love that private sector development you and the Guv are pitching. Of course, you two can spot it pretty easily on Fantasy Island but no one else is there.


Pat Killen
A political operative quite familiar in NM GOP circles has resurfaced in the state. From the state land commissioner:

Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn announced the appointment of Patrick Killen as Assistant Commissioner for Policy & Special Projects. . .Killen consulted over 30 campaigns and served as political director for the state GOP during the 2000 election and as political director for John Sanchez’s 2002 gubernatorial campaign. . .. He most recently managed a stakeholder engagement team for Maersk Oil in Houston, Texas.

Killen is a native of Clovis. Dunn has been mentioned as a possible 2018 GOP Guv candidate but insiders say right now he is more focused on seeking a second term as land commissioner. Former Dem Land Commissioner Ray Powell, Jr. tells us he is seriously weighing another run for the office from which he was ousted by Dunn in 2014.


Three female legislators--Reps. Patty Lundstrom and Christine Trujillo and State Sen. Sue Wilson Beffort were interviewed about the '16 legislative session by Susan Loubet for her public radio broadcast.

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