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Politics Notebook: Fundraiser with Fiorina raises $100K; Dems target House

SANTA FE — New Mexico Republicans raised more than $100,000 at a weekend dinner headlined by presidential hopeful Carly Fiorina.

More than 300 people attended the annual Silver Elephant Dinner, state GOP spokesman Pat Garrett said Monday.

Gov. Susana Martinez, Lt. Gov. John Sanchez, U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce and House Speaker Don Tripp, R-Socorro, were among the Republican state officials who attended the shindig at the Hyatt Regency Tamaya.

Fiorina, a former business executive who ran for a U.S. Senate seat in California in 2010, announced last month that she would seek the Republican presidential nomination for 2016, joining a crowded field of candidates.

In recent speeches, she has touted her business background while frequently criticizing Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton, who is holding an Albuquerque fundraiser Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Republican Party of New Mexico Chairwoman Debbie Maestas said the GOP dinner Saturday was an example of a “unified” state party supporting “sensible conservative values.”

EYE ON THE HOUSE: Democrats are also ramping up their fundraising efforts with an eye toward next year’s election cycle.

More specifically, an event this week will focus on ginning up support – and dollars – for Democrats’ attempt to win back control of the state House of Representatives.

In a landmark 2014 election, Republicans seized a majority in the House for the first time in 60 years. They hold a 37-33 advantage in the chamber, with all 70 seats up for election next year.

The Thursday fundraiser will be held at the Albuquerque home of John Wertheim, a former state party chairman who ran for state treasurer in 2014.

Those attending the event are being asked to give at least $75. The money that’s raised will go to the New Mexico House Democratic Campaign Committee, a political action committee

In addition to Wertheim, other hosts for the event include state Auditor Tim Keller, Bernalillo County Commissioner Maggie Hart Stebbins and former Attorney General Patricia Madrid, according to an invitation for the fundraiser.

Dan Boyd: