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Bernalillo County DA, judges file for election

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Edward Benavidez lost his job as the chief Metropolitan Court judge in 2018 when he failed to win a retention election. Now he’s hoping to unseat a recently appointed District Court judge.

Tuesday was candidate filing day for Bernalillo County’s judges and district attorney, and only two of 11 races have more than one candidate. Current DA Raúl Torrez is not facing an opponent as he seeks a second term.

Benavidez has filed to run against fellow Democrat and Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham appointee Daniel Ramczyk, who is the current Division 6 judge in the 2nd Judicial District. And Metro Court Judge Courtney Weaks, hoping to move across the street to District Court, is challenging incumbent Daniel Gallegos, a Republican.

State law requires newly appointed judges to run in the next general election in order to keep their jobs. Four District Court judges, Lisa Chavez Ortega, Erin O’Connell, Amber Chavez Baker and Joshua Allison are running unopposed to stay in their positions, as are Metro Court judges Brittany Maldonado Malott, Jason Jaramillo, Felicia Blea-Rivera and David Murphy.

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