Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Gay Press Gives Kudos To Big Bill Prez Bid; Plus: Mayor Marty Camp Comments On Di's Guv Poll, And: My Bottom Lines On A NM Tuesday 

The modern Democratic party is a whole made up of many parts, not the least of which is a sizeable gay community, important to the Prez contenders in both votes and its ability to raise money. For Governor Richardson, the initial reaction to his Prez bid in the gay press is quite favorable. In fact, one prominent gay issues writer, Chris Crain, opining in the New York Blade, urges gays to take a close look at Richardson as his record on issues of import to them is actually better than frontrunner Hillary Clinton's.

"Both oppose gay marriage, but when the New Mexico legislature pushed a “Defense of Marriage Act” in 2005, Richardson said he would veto it unless it was enacted alongside civil unions. His position wasn’t just expedient; it was principled and would satisfy any but those with a marriage litmus test. The DOMA effort failed.

Richardson has signed a virtual panoply of gay rights protections, that includes:

* Expanding civil rights laws to include sexual orientation and gender identity (only three other states had done so at the time);
* A hate crimes law that protects both actual or perceived sexual orientation and gender identity; and
* An executive order extending health insurance and other benefits to the same-sex domestic partners of state employees.

Like Hillary, Bill is on record backing full-fledged civil unions...Richardson opposes state-level constitutional amendments that ban gays from marrying.

"While in Congress, Richardson backed military service for out gay men and lesbians. That means, unlike Hillary, Richardson was anti-Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell when it was very uncool to be." Penned Crain.

Richardson's praise from the gay press isn't going to win him any favors from conservatives or even NM Hispanics who polls show oppose gay civil unions in large numbers. But Bill is done running for governor. Some observers have said his problem is that he is too "centrist" for Dem Prez primaries in which liberals have an outsized say. His positions impacting gays could give him entree to some liberals and their checkbooks who otherwise might not give him a second look.


The Mayor Marty camp was rather sanguine about that poll revealed here Monday showing him lagging Light Guv Diane Denish for the 2010 Dem Guv nod by a margin of 56-38 percent. "We hope she believes those numbers. It is so very early that these polls mean very little. I will say that Marty has more of a record of accomplishment than Diane. He has been an executive and she has not. That will play a role in the campaign," said one Chavez Alligator who also wondered if the poll "pushed" any of its repondents in Diane's directon. We can't tell because the questions have not crossed our desk, just the full memo from her pollster.

KOB-TV's Stu Dyson, following up on our report for the station's 6 p.m news, told us during an interview we did for the broadcast that Marty told him the early start to the campaign "is absurd," but stopping it is not in the cards.

Meanwhile, Dem heavyweight Ed Romero is holding an ABQ fund raiser for Chavez tonight, but Ed is walking the line on the Guv race saying he is not committing to Marty at this time, just doing a favor for a longtime friend. He'll be doing some of that for Big Bill too.


Ex-GOP Chair John Lattauzio, commenting on Monday's blog regarding the departure from New Mexico of another former R chair--John Dendahl--said he has a bone to pick. We said that when Dendahl took over as party chair in '94 he "rebuilt a downtrodden Republican party" to which Lattauzio of Alamogordo, chair prior to Dendahl's ascension, responded:

"John took over a party that was arguably in better shape than at any time in NM history. Under the six years of Edward Lujan followed by the six years of John Lattauzio, Republicans elected two governors, a land commissioner and an attorney general." Wrote Lattauzio.

Lattauzio is taking some credit for Gary Johnson's '94 Guv victory. Dendahl ran against Johnson in that year's R primary. In December of that year, he assumed the chairmanship, so we gave him undue credit for the first Johnsosn victory. Lattauzio says he harbors no animosity towards Dendahl, that he just disagrees with him on drug legalization and other issues... Diane Denish actually has won the Dem nomination for lieutenant governor three times, not twice, as we initially blogged Monday. She won it twice as Big Bill was winning the Dem Guv prize and in 1998 when she was the running mate of the man she now opposes for the Dem Guv primary, ABQ Mayor Chavez.


Finally, is the Marty-Diane early start driving other politicos crazy? Maybe. Check this one out from Santa Fe:

"Second term Democrat Santa Fe County Commissioner Harry Montoya who ran unopposed in the primary is eyeing Udall's congressional seat when it becomes vacant. The scenario goes like this: A Democrat is elected president in 2008 and selects Udall to be Secretary of Interior to follow in his dad's footsteps. His recent appointment by Pelosi and Company to House Approps proves his stock is rising."

Well, don't hold your breath, Harry. But if Marty and Di can plot years ahead, why shouldn't you?

This is the home of New Mexico politics--www.joemonahan.com--straight-shooting independent news and analysis. It's been that way here since '03. Drop me an email with your news or comments from the link at the top of the page.

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