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11 candidates vie in 3rd Congressional District

Copyright © 2020 Albuquerque Journal

SANTA FE – Social distancing doesn’t apply in the race for the vacant seat in New Mexico’s 3rd Congressional District, where a crowded field of seven Democrats and four Republicans have lined up to replace Ben Ray Luján, who has held the position since 2009 but is abandoning the seat to run for U.S. Senate.

On the Democratic side, the candidates are (in the order they appear on the ballot) Santa Fe attorney Teresa Leger Fernandez, Sandoval County Treasurer Laura M. Montoya, 1st Judicial District Attorney Marco Serna, state Rep. Joseph Sanchez, former CIA operative Valerie Plame, former state and federal government administrator John Blair and environmental attorney Kyle J. Tisdel.

The Republican field is made up of former Santa Fe County commissioner Harry B. Montoya, businesswoman Karen Evette Bedonie, retired oil and gas engineer Alexis M. Johnson and write-in candidate Angela Gale Morales.

The district is the most ethnically diverse of the state’s three congressional districts. Stretching across the northern half of the state from the Navajo Nation and San Juan Basin oil fields in the northwest, to the northern mountains largely populated by Hispanic families with roots going back centuries, to the cattle ranchers of the eastern plains, CD3 is also home to Los Alamos National Laboratory and Santa Fe, the state capital and a mecca for the arts.

The Journal and KOAT-TV will put on a forum for the Democratic candidates in the CD3 race to air on KOAT-TV at 4 p.m. Sunday. The forum will be held “virtually” and will be moderated by the Journal’s Kent Walz and KOAT’s Doug Fernandez.

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