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Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Sneak Peek: Santa's Christmas Gifts To State's Politicos Revealed, Plus: Apodaca Fires Pre-Holiday Volley At Lujan Grisham 

Santa Claus won't forget the politicos. Our sources at the North Pole are in the know and give you an exclusive sneak peek at the gifts that will find their way under the trees of those politicos this Chirstmas:

Gov. Martinez--Santa has buffed up the Guv's resume and by the end of '18 he hopes to land her a good paying slot in the private sector. Chief Marketing Officer for Dion's Pizza is a possible, says Santa.

Jay McCleskey--The Governor's consigliere has been given a special gift from Santa--no FBI search warrants for all of 2018.

Keith Gardner--The Governor's Chief of Staff is getting what his boss is getting--a buffed up resume so he can land in the private sector when the Governor's term ends next year. One possibility: rainmaker for the Robert Aragon law firm.

Brian Egolf--The Speaker of the NM House will be getting a surprise Christmas card from Rep. Debbie Rodella, saying she won't run against him for Speaker anytime soon. You can thank Santa, Mr. Speaker.

Peter Wirth--Santa has s special gift for the Senate Majority Leader--a completely rewritten rule book on how to handle sex harassment. Santa isn't mentioning names, just that the Leader may be in need of that book.

Hector Balderas---The Attorney General will be getting free firewood from Santa this year. It will come from all of those leftover "Brian Colon for ABQ Mayor" signs.

Tim Keller--Santa is arranging for ABQ City Council President Ken Sanchez to run for State Auditor, win the election and then resign from the council next year thus removing a major thorn in the new mayor's side.

Michelle Lujan Grisham--Santa says he is going to solve all her lieutenant governor woes and make former State Rep. Rick Miera--"The Quiet Candidate"--the Democratic nominee (but do the voters know it?).

Steve Pearce--Santa says he will reveal to the congressman and likely GOP Guv nominee on Christmas morning that he has great-great-grandparents who were born in Rio Arriba County, thus giving Pearce a chance of actually winning in '18.

Mike Geier--Santa is gong to be generous with the new APD chief. He is giving him a year's supply of Sominex and Prilosec. And you know why.

Nate Gentry--Santa says he gave his gift to the state House Minority Leader early when GOP State Rep. Dennis Roche announced he will not seek re-election, removing Gentry's chief rival from his sight.

Manny Gonzales--You guessed it. Santa is sparing no expense and giving the Bernalillo County Sheriff 100 video lapel cameras for his deputies. The only catch is that the cameras come with a strict "no return" policy.

Jeff Apodaca and Joe Cervantes--Santa's gift to the two Dem gubernatorial candidates is six hours of free mediation to decide which one of them will get out of the race so the other could stand a chance of beating Lujan Grisham. Guv hopeful Peter DeBenedittis has been invited to observe.

Martin Heinrich--Santa promises the US Senator who is up for re-election in 2018 that there will be a poll soon that shows his job approval rating above 50 percent. But Santa won't say when.

Mick Rich--The likely GOP nominee to run against Heinrich will be awarded a name change by Santa Claus. Starting Christmas Day Rich will be known as "Richie Rich," finally giving him some name ID.

John Sanchez--Santa goes high-tech for his gift for the lieutenant governor. He will be given a free memory erasure session at the Mayo Clinic at which all memories of the past seven years will be permanently wiped. Santa values this gift as "priceless."

It seems Santa has been more than generous to our politicos. Now let's see how giving they are to Mr. and Mrs. New Mexico in the new year.

A PRE-HOLIDAY VOLLEY

Apodaca
Goodwill toward men and all that will have to wait a few days for Dem Governor candidate Jeff Apodaca. Trailing far behind Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham in fund-raising and presumably public opinion, Apodaca fired a pre-holiday volley at Grisham Monday as he began to play the long game of catch-up:

(Apodaca) is asking U.S. House Democratic Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi to investigate claims Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham discriminated against a transgender intern. Apodaca said that Pelosi should launch a formal congressional ethics investigation into the charges from a former intern with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute. Riley Del Rey says she was fired from Lujan Grisham's office because of her transgender identity. Apodaca says "harassment and discrimination are totally unacceptable."

Queersmas 
Grisham has denied any wrongdoing regarding Riley Del Rey. She did not directly respond to Apodaca's request for an investigation, but she did post pictures of herself on Facebook posing with members of the transgender community. They were from Equality New Mexico's recent Queersmas party.

Meanwhile, the demise of Michael Padilla as both a lieutenant governor candidate and Senate Majority Whip, events hastened by Rep. Grisham who called on him to get out of the lieutenant governor's race, has gone over well with the progressive wing of the Democratic Party but in the heavy Democratic ABQ South Valley--Padilla's home turf--the move has been more controversial and insiders say it may have created an opportunity for Apodaca there.

SILENT ON SANTOLINA

We blogged recently of the ABQ City Council:

"Sanchez, Pena and Borrego are from districts that supported Mayor Keller but are more conservative socially and economically and heavily Hispanic. Pena dragged her feet in endorsing Keller in the run-off and all three Westside councilors have been sympathetic towards the Santolina development project for the far Westside--not a fave of Keller's."

Councilor Borrego says in response:

FYI- I have not stated an opinion on my view of this project. Just wanted to let you know. 

Whether a position of neutrality is "sympathetic" to Santolina or not, we'll let you decide.

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(c)NM POLITICS WITH JOE MONAHAN 2017
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