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Former congressional candidate Michelle Garcia Holmes over the weekend announced that she will again be a candidate for the Albuquerque-based seat in the House of Representatives.
The Republican is the first person to announce a bid to unseat Rep. Melanie Stansbury, D-N.M., who won the seat over the summer in a special election against the GOP candidate, state Sen. Mark Moores. The House seat will be up for election next year.
Garcia Holmes has never held public office, but she has been a candidate for several city, state and national positions, making bids for City Council, mayor, lieutenant governor and Congress.
Garcia Holmes, a retired Albuquerque police officer and former chief of staff to the attorney general, most recently ran for New Mexico’s 1st Congressional District seat in 2020 against Rep. Deb Haaland, who won the seat before being tapped as interior secretary.
“I have spent my life working in public service, I am pro-life, pro-second amendment, and I love our country. I am not interested in being the typical Congresswoman who is only interested in helping themselves while leaving their state behind,” Garcia Holmes said in a statement. “I want to make New Mexico a better place to live, not only for me, but for you, your family, and our future generations.”
In a news release announcing her candidacy, Garcia Holmes said that during her career she worked to strengthen anti-human trafficking and child pornography laws in the state. She also highlighted her family’s ties New Mexico – her great-grandfather was a northern New Mexico rancher.
The 1st Congressional District represents most of Bernalillo County, all of Torrance County and slivers of Sandoval, Santa Fe and Valencia counties. The district leans Democratic. Stansbury won the special election over Moores 60% to 36% in June. In 2020, Haaland beat Garcia Holmes 58% to 42%.
Garcia Holmes said she’ll offer voters an alternative to President Joe Biden. She said the president has mismanaged the Mexican border and the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan.
“I think we need a strong voice in Congress like mine,” she said. “And also, you know, the crime issue still remains in this district.”