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House candidate launches introduction ad buy

Roswell oil and gas executive Claire Chase launched a radio ad campaign last Monday to introduce herself to voters in the 2nd Congressional District.

The ads are part of what campaign manager Mike Berg calls a “substantial ad buy” that will later include television advertisements in what could be an expensive race for the U.S. House seat currently held by Democrat Xochitl Torres Small. Berg declined to say how much the campaign was spending on the ads, which he said would air on stations throughout the district.

Outside groups have already poured thousands of dollars into the race, which is expected to be one of the most watched campaigns in 2020. American Action Network has spent more than $220,000 in television and digital advertising targeting Torres Small over her impeachment vote, and that number is expected to climb with the launching of its most recent campaign. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee had an ad buy in December supporting Torres Small over votes on legislation lowering the cost of prescription drugs.

Chase’s ad campaign bills her as a “conservative outsider.”

“President (Donald) Trump needs backup to end the witch hunts, take on the D.C. establishment, and build the wall,” Chase said in a release about the ad campaign. “Last election showed us that career politicians just aren’t going to cut it. New Mexico needs an outsider.”

The ads include some biographical information, promote Chase as a supporter of the president, as well as a protector “of the sanctity of life.”

But Chase has been criticized by both Republican primary opponents Yvette Herrell and Chris Mathys over posts she made on Facebook criticizing Trump during his campaign for president in 2016. And Herrell’s loyalty is now being questioned by Chase’s and Mathys’ campaigns over an email she sent in March 2016 to legislators asking about support for Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, a former Trump rival for the Republican nomination.

Herrell’s campaign manager, Dakotah Parshall, said Herrell – a former state legislator from Alamogordo – has run an aggressive marketing campaign since announcing in 2019, including advertising on digital, radio and through the mail. She said the campaign “will continue to communicate Yvette’s pro-Trump, pro-Constitution, pro-business message through the primary.”

Mathys – a Las Cruces businessman – said he was running a broad-based campaign with a strong emphasis on voter contact along with television advertising “to make sure our message is heard throughout the district.”

“As a grassroots campaign we are not beholden to the campaign consulting class,” he said.

Torres Small’s campaign manager, Helen Smith, said the congresswoman’s campaign does not have any television or radio ads running. Torres Small does not have opposition in the Democratic primary.

HAALAND MEETS WITH CONSTITUENTS: U.S. Rep. Deb Haaland, D-N.M., held her first Coffee with your Congresswoman event of 2020 in Albuquerque on Jan. 25. Haaland gave a legislative update and then opened up the floor to residents for questions. Residents asked about prescriptions drugs costs, missing and murdered indigenous women, public lands and veterans issues.

Haaland highlighted The Lower Drug Costs Now Act, H.R. 3, which gives Medicare the power to negotiate directly with drug companies. Her office said the lower prices negotiated by Medicare will be transparent so that private insurance companies can make the same prices available to their consumers. It also creates a new $2,000 out-of-pocket limit on prescription drug costs for Medicare beneficiaries.

TORRES SMALL URGES FUNDING FOR HEALTH PROGRAMS: Torres Small called on House Leadership to prioritize consistent federal funding for several health programs in a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.

In the letter, she discussed the need to re-authorize and provide long-term funding for the Health Center Program, the National Health Service Corps Program and the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education Program, which impact her district.

Scott Turner: sturner@abqjournal.com

 


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