Friday, November 09, 2007

Chavez Meets With NY Senator Pushing On Him, Plus: More Senate Polling, And: Cervantes In House Race Monday 

Rep. Tom Udall's staff confirmed Saturday he will seek the Dem US Senate nomination.

Sen. Schumer
"Let New Mexico decide." That was the message ABQ Mayor Marty Chavez's campaign says he personally delivered to New York Senator Charles Schumer at a Washington D.C. meeting this week. They also say the Senator, head of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, did not ask Chavez to get out of the Senate race in favor of Dem US Rep. Tom Udall.

"There was nothing resolved. The mayor told Senator Schumer he believes it is best that New Mexicans decide this race," Said Chavez campaign manager Mark Fleisher.

The spokesman said Chavez remains fully committed to a Senate run. He dismissed rumors that Chavez might be persuaded to run for the open ABQ House seat, clearing the Senate field for Udall. "That is not going to happen. There is zero chance. Mayor Chavez is running for Senate." Said Fleisher.

Schumer made local headlines when he indicated the DSCC might endorse a candidate in our state's Dem Senate race, clearly meaning that they would endorse Udall because they do not think Chavez can win the general election. The Chavez campaign snapped back that it wanted "New Mexicans not New Yorkers" to decide the course of the Senate race.


Meanwhile, the left wing of the Democratic Party is beating the drums the loudest for Udall to come into the race. A new poll released on the liberal Web site Daily Kos confirms the conventional wisdom that Udall, as things stand today, would be a stronger general election candidate than the three term ABQ Mayor.

The poll, conducted this week among 600 "likely NM voters" showed Congressman Tom beating GOP US Rep. Wilson 55% to 38% and trouncing Rep. Pearce 54% to 37%. The poll says Chavez trails Wilson by three points and Pearce by one. Pearce and Wilson are leaving their US House seats to run for the GOP nod for Senate.

The poll did not measure Big Bill's strength against Wilson and Pearce but earlier polls show him stronger than Udall. Richardson says he isn't running. Some of the Alligators said one way he could get the Senate monkey off of his back is by endorsing Udall for the Senate seat over Chavez. An interesting thought, if Udall joins the battle.


Meanwhile, The Guv was getting some good spin for a change for his chances in the Dem Prez sweepstakes. An AP analysis includes this tidbit: "A senior Iowa Democrat who backs Edwards is telling important people around the state that you will beat one of the top three Democrats on Jan. 3 — Clinton, Obama or Edwards — and drive that person from the race. A few others say the spoiler role could go to Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware."

Organ Mountains
Monday is Veterans Day and we wouldn't be surprised to see some of our beloved politicos surface to make some hay and throw some more wrenches into the complicated political equations we are all taking about. We know for sure that Doña Ana State Rep. Joe Cervantes will be making an appearance. He tells us he will formally announce his candidacy for the Democratic nomination for the southern congressional seat seat at the NM Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces whose main building is named after former NM Governor Bruce King.

Among those in attendance will be State Reps Kenny Martinez and Al Park who helped Cervantes spearhead an unsuccessful coup attempt against House Speaker Ben Lujan last December. Cervantes won't have to worry about Santa Fe anymore. He has told associates he is done with the State House and will not file for re-election for his seat.

Announcing at the ranch museum is intended to emphasize the hopeful's generational ties to agriculture. Cervantes hails from a major chile growing family. His mother was a founding member of the museum along with former Governor King and the Cervantes family cattle brand is on display there.


In an email Friday morning, just two days after he got in the southern congressional race, State Rep. Jose Campos said he is giving up his run for health reasons: "I will no longer be able to seek out the 2nd congressional seat. I will need surgery on my back this Wednesday." He said.

Running with Campos and Cervantes is oil man Harry Teague, Doña Ana County Commissioner Bill McCamley, Frank McKinnon and Al Kissling. Because Cervantes and Teague have signaled they are willing to self-finance their campaigns, they will start as the leading contenders, but this one should deliver plenty of fun.

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