Editorial: Journal endorsements in Tuesday’s primary races

Here is a recap of the Journal’s recommendations in contested statewide and Albuquerque-area races on the June 5 primary ballots.

Governor: Democrat Michelle Lujan Grisham

U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s broad résumé gives her the edge – she has served as a Bernalillo County commissioner, a state Cabinet secretary for 16 years under three governors and is finishing up her third term as a congresswoman. She has cultivated a good track record of constituent services and has shown the ability to take moderate positions.

Lieutenant Governor: Democrat Rick Miera

Former state representative Rick Miera knows how state government works – and doesn’t – having served in the N.M. House for 24 years. He has vowed to be the state’s ombudsman so people “feel that their problems are being addressed.” And as a therapist, drug counselor and behavioral health advocate for more than 40 years, he’s pledging to tackle NM’s scourge of addiction and struggle with adequate access to mental health services.

State Auditor: Democrat Brian Colón

Brian Colón’s degrees in finance and law make him well-suited to be the next state auditor. In addition to his academic training, Colón understands the important watchdog role the office plays in ferreting out waste, fraud and abuse.

Land Commissioner: Democrat George K. Muñoz

Sen. George Muñoz has served in the state Legislature for 10 years. He says that as land commissioner he would work aggressively to expand renewable energy projects. And he pledges to work with the Legislature to create a coherent energy policy that leverages wind, solar and transmission and energy storage to create new revenue streams for the state.

1st Congressional District: Democrat Damon P. Martinez

Albuquerque native Damon Martinez served as New Mexico’s U.S. attorney from 2014 to 2017, helping the U.S. Department of Justice get the Albuquerque Police Department on a path to reform and the University of New Mexico improve its handling of sexual assault investigations. He’s been an officer in the U.S. Armed Forces since the Sept. 11 attacks and understands the importance of N.M.’s national laboratories and military bases. And he has worked in Congress for Sen. Jeff Bingaman and then-Rep. Tom Udall, knows how the system works and would be able to hit the ground running.

2nd Congressional District: Democrat Xochitl Torres Small

A water attorney and former staffer for Sen. Tom Udall, Las Cruces native Xochitl Torres Small is focused on infrastructure, private-sector jobs and common-sense immigration reform and gun-safety measures.

2nd Congressional District: Republican Monty Newman

Monty Newman is a former mayor of Hobbs, former Hobbs city commissioner and has served on various boards. He knows southern New Mexico and advocates for pragmatic solutions on issues including secure borders, the federal deficit and economic opportunities to keep young residents here.

Public Regulation Commission

District 2: Republican Jerry W. Partin

District 4: Democrat Lynda M. Lovejoy

District 5: Democrat Sandy R. Jones, Republican Joseph Aaron Bizzell

New Mexico House of Representatives

District 13: Democrat Robert “Bobby” Atencio

District 22: Republican Merritt Hamilton Allen

District 24: Republican Michael Joseph Meyer

District 27: Democrat William B. Pratt

District 31: Republican William R. Rehm

Bernalillo County Commission District 5: Republican James E. Smith

Bernalillo County Sheriff: Democrat Sylvester Stanley

Bernalillo County Probate Judge: Democrat Lawrence Kay

This editorial first appeared in the Albuquerque Journal. It was written by members of the editorial board and is unsigned as it represents the opinion of the newspaper rather than the writers.

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