Albuquerque’s last mayoral election was a crowded affair, with eight candidates on the ballot, plus a few more who campaigned early but dropped out before Election Day.
The 2021 mayoral race has not generated nearly the number of hopefuls, but first-term Mayor Tim Keller and Bernalillo County Sheriff Manny Gonzales aren’t the only candidates.
In addition to those two, three other people have filed candidate registration forms with the City Clerk’s office. They are:
Bevins is a first-time political candidate, though not necessarily new to campaigns. The 25-year-old previously volunteered for Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign and, according to emailed comments to the Journal, has “knocked on doors for countless local candidates.”
Bevins, who is autistic, is not currently employed, and said he dedicates his time to volunteering and activism, whether that is picking up needles at local parks, participating in Black Lives Matter protests or delivering care packages with Albuquerque Mutual Aid.
“I am running for mayor because my generation is set to inherit a city ravaged by climate change, housing that is perpetually unaffordable, and a crippled economy,” Bevins told the Journal.
Sais, who lives in Southwest Albuquerque, is also pursuing elected office for the first time.
He said as mayor he would focus on protecting the city’s police – who he believes have been treated unjustly – and improving opportunities for youth, including potentially through city-run education in trades.
Sais, 53, is a retired school bus driver who said he has been active with the Young American Football League and has served as a volunteer on Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.
An Albuquerque native, Sais said he’s running because he does not like Albuquerque’s crime or the country’s current direction.
“I’m not a politician; I’m just a regular person trying to make Albuquerque changed for the better,” he said.
Aragon is the most recent mayoral hopeful to submit his candidate registration paperwork.
Though he did not immediately answer Journal questions about his candidacy, Aragon has been circling the political sphere for years.
The talk radio host registered as an Albuquerque mayoral candidate in 2017 but withdrew from the race well before Election Day. More recently, Aragon made an unsuccessful bid to be the Republican Party’s candidate in the June special election that will determine who fills the state’s open seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.
ON THE SIDELINES: Local bank executive Lonnie Talbert has not registered for the Albuquerque mayor’s race or pursued candidacy in any official way.
But the former Bernalillo County commissioner said recently that a mayoral run is something he’d “definitely consider … if it were the right opportunity at the right time.”
Talbert recently termed out after eight years representing the county’s northeast district on the commission. He said he is flattered that residents have asked him if he’d consider running for mayor, though he has not even broached the possibility with the leadership or board at Southwest Capital Bank, where he is president.
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