Rep. Ben Ray Lujan (D-Nambe/Santa Fe) announced his run for the state’s newly open Senate race yesterday. Mr. Lujan becomes the first major candidate of either party to announce his candidacy after Sen. Tom Udall (D) made his retirement intentions public last week. Other Democrats, including Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver and freshman Rep. Deb Haaland (D-Albuquerque) are also potential candidates.
The Republican side has been relatively quiet, but former Gov. Susana Martinez and ex-Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry would certainly be formidable statewide candidates, as would former Congressman Steve Pearce who is currently the New Mexico Republican Party chairman. Democrats will be favored to hold the seat, but the contest could potentially turn competitive.
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