Two N.M. Lawmakers May Have Pressed Attorney Purge | Sunlight Foundation:
Back at the beginning of the year the Justice Department announced that it was replacing seven U.S. Attorneys in an unprecedented move. The Attorney ‘purge’ was able to take place due to a provision allowing the Justice Department to unilaterally replace U.S. Attorneys for any reason that was snuck into the PATRIOT Act reauthorization by Senator Arlen Specter ☼ (R-PA). McClatchy Newspapers reports today that one of those Attorneys, David Iglesias, U.S. Attorney from New Mexico, was pressured by Rep. Heather Wilson ☼ (R-NM) and Sen. Pete Domenici ☼ (R-NM) to bring down indictments on local Democratic officials prior to the 2006 midterm election. Iglesias refused and has since been purged by the Justice Department. If Wilson and Domenici did attempt to pressure a sitting U.S. Attorney for the political benefit of the oft-endangered Wilson it would be a serious ethical violation.
I haven't heard the statement from the Madrid Campaign, but those that have said it's all over. No recount.
The absolute absurdity of this situation is that without a candidate to contest the results, the voters have no standing before the state to seek a recount.
Who cares if Madrid bowed out? We just spent millions on this new system and we want proof that it works. Its that simple.
I'm looking for a lawyer who gets this. The parties and the cult of the candidate have a stranglehold on our democracy in this state and it has to end. Voters are entitled to an accounting from the state that goes beyond the minimum of tallying numbers generated by a computer. We want verification of the vote count by the machines.
Rep. Heather Wilson edged Democratic challenger Patricia Madrid by 879 votes in the final, unofficial 1st Congressional District tally completed late Friday, bucking a national trend that pushed many other Republicans out of office.
The four-term Republican incumbent ended up with a total of 105,916 votes, compared with 105,037 for Madrid.
The final, unofficial tally came as Bernalillo County completed its count 10 days after the Nov. 7 election.
The two-term New Mexico attorney general's hopes of riding the anti-Republican wave to Washington fell short by a margin of less than a half-percent.
Wilson declared victory two nights after the election, claiming the margin even then was decisive, and her backers never wavered in their confidence as the vote count wore on.
"The people of New Mexico have asked me to continue to represent them in the Congress," Wilson said in a prepared statement Friday night. "I am humbled by that trust, and I will work every day to continue to earn it."
"Mrs. Madrid stood up for what she believed in. We believe in different things, but those who supported her worked hard and I commend them for their effort," Wilson said.
Madrid did not concede after Wilson's announcement last week, and a spokeswoman late Friday said she would wait for final numbers to come in before deciding whether to concede or seek a recount.
The Bernalillo County canvassing board is to meet Monday afternoon to finalize the elections results. Madrid spokeswoman Heather Brewer said the Madrid campaign would decide what to do then.
"Other people can declare victory before all the votes are counted, but we choose to wait and let democracy run its course," Brewer said. "Our perspective is when every vote is counted, when every voter has had their say, that's when the results are final."
The door to Congress appears to have slammed shut on state Attorney General Patricia Madrid, though her camp continues to insist Madrid might still squeeze through.
Unofficial but final vote tallies released Friday night by Bernalillo County gave Republican U.S. Rep. Heather Wilson an 879-vote victory over Madrid in what had become a strident, expensive and drawn-out campaign to represent the 1st Congressional District.
Election officials will spend the weekend checking their work, but County Clerk Mary Herrera said a change in the numbers now "doesn't seem possible."
Still, Madrid did not concede the race and spokeswoman Heather Brewer said the campaign was determined to wait until the results are finalized Monday to decide whether to seek a recount.
"We're not talking about a recount right now because the count is not done," Brewer said. "We want to let democracy run its course."
Numbers Tighten In Wilson, Madrid Race:
In New Mexico's 1st District Congressional race, the vote count is getting tighter between Republican Heather Wilson and her Democratic opponent, Patricia Madrid.
With more than 4500 ballots yet to be counted, Heather Wilson this evening declared herself victorious this evening during a press conference where she was joined by her husband and two children.
Wilson's lead in the race had been down to a low of 700 votes over Patricia Madrid before this evening when her lead grew to approximately 1600 votes.
After declaring victory, Wilson spoke to her supporters of her opponent, saying that her door still open to them. Wilson then toasted her victory with her family, drinking orange juice out of Champagne glasses.
The move strikes me as odd. With so many ballots yet to be counted, not to mention the narrow margin being grounds for a recount and the need for a 2% audit of the machine count, one is left to wonder why Heather is hurrying the process by attempting to declare it over.
Latest report from the belly of the beast has Wilson up 1300 votes. The implications of Madrid not succeeding are too much for my addled brain to contemplate.
All I know is that Bush already fired Rumsfeld--evidently over the objections of the Vice-President. It's hard to understand how Cheney can really advocate keeping Rumsfeld around and say that he's trying to give the President good advice.
The White House media team is making sure that it is known President Bush overruled Dick Cheney.
The President seems to have gotten the message from the nation on the war. I pray for the President that he can become the kind of President he wants us to remember him as.
New Mexico's nationally watched battle between 1st Congressional District Republican Rep. Heather Wilson and Democratic challenger Patricia Madrid remained razor-close early today.
Madrid had led throughout the count Tuesday night as Democrats surged to victories in House seats across the country. Wilson moved into the lead for the first time just after midnight as Torrance County precincts boosted her to a 310-vote margin out of more than 192,000 votes tallied. Wilson's lead grew to 1,171 with 99 percent of the vote counted at 1 a.m. The Bernalillo County clerk was hand-counting about 4,000 ballots from the county after midnight.
Another 2,300 absentee ballots turned in at polling places on Tuesday also were still to be counted, County Clerk Mary Herrera said.
The candidates came up about even in early and absentee voting. Madrid had the edge in early votes cast; Wilson led in absentees. Madrid's early lead in the vote tally Tuesday night was marred by controversy: Two large Albuquerque precincts ran out of ballots, some voters were turned away, and others left in anger before the supply was replenished. "They disenfranchised voters and turned them away, and that was wrong," Wilson told the Journal.
Incumbent Republican Congresswoman Heather Wilson is calling for federal monitors from a US House committee to keep tabs on voting in New Mexico’s 1st Congressional District.
Wilson made that announcement after a heavily Republican Northeast Heights precinct with roughly 2,500 registered voters ran out of ballots within two hours of the polls opening.
Precinct 603 was supposed to receive 1,500 ballots but only had 150 on hand when voting began at 7:00 am. When ballots ran out at about 9:00 am, voters were asked to leave their names and numbers and told they would be called when new ballots arrived.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT JONAH COHEN NOVEMBER 6, 2006 505-298-3662
Court Denies Democrat Efforts to Suppress Republican GOTV “If no signs of intimidation techniques have emerged yet, launch a ‘pre-emptive strike.’”-- 2004 Democrat Election Day Manual
(Albuquerque, NM) -- The New Mexico Democrat Party pulled a page out of the 2004 DNC Playbook when they attempted but failed to get a temporary restraining order to shut down the Republican phone banks in Congressional District I.
Today the judge denied their injunction and Republican Party volunteers will continue phoning voters.
The Republican Party made more than 22,000 phone calls to voters on Saturday, November 4, as part of the party’s Get Out The Vote effort.
One voter, who shared the same name as two other Republicans, complained that she received a phone call from a campaign volunteer giving her inaccurate information about her polling place.
When the voter then called the Republican Party—with the number, mind you, which she was provided originally—she was given correct information and the nominal error was ironed out.
Despite this, she contacted the Democratic Party who had their lawyers immediately file a frivolous lawsuit to shut down Sunday’s phone banks.
Due to the long lines at Early Voting locations, the Republican Party redoubled its efforts to contact voters on Saturday, November 4, after reports of lines as long as 3 hours. “County Clerk Mary Herrera failed to provide adequate and equitable Early Voting locations in Bernalillo County which resulted in long lines, 3-hour waits and some voters leaving before voting,” said Marta Kramer, executive director of the Republican Party of New Mexico. “I shudder to think of Tuesday’s train wreck.”
“Mary Herrera clearly took care of Democrat voters by placing 10 of the 12 Early Voting locations in Democrat legislative districts and gave Republican voters no choice but to stand in line for hours if they wanted to vote early,” continued Kramer.
“Ironically, as the Democrats had their lawyers in court maliciously accusing us over a handful of honest semantic errors, it turned out Richardson’s campaign was guilty of the same snafu,” added Jonah Cohen, communications director of the Republican Party of New Mexico. “A leading New Mexico journalist reported on his blog that he received a mailer from Richardson that gave him the wrong polling location and name.”