Arguably the Republicans’ strongest candidate in the budding special election to replace Interior Secretary-Designate Deb Haaland (D-Albuquerque) in the US House apparently won’t enter the race. 2020 US Senate candidate Mark Ronchetti, who held Sen. Ben Ray Lujan (D) to a 52-46% statewide victory in November, returned to his position as an on-camera weatherman for the Albuquerque CBS television affiliate. This exposure gave him the residual name identification to make the open US Senate campaign competitive.
The special election will be called upon Rep. Haaland’s confirmation to her new position, at which point she will resign from the House. At that time, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) will take the necessary action to schedule the replacement special election in order to fill the vacancy.
President-Elect Joe Biden carrying the Albuquerque anchored 1st CD with a 60-37% margin certainly gives the eventual Democratic nominee the inside track toward a special election victory. With Mr. Ronchetti’s decision to return to television news, the Democrats’ chances of prevailing are now even greater. Under New Mexico election law, the parties will meet in a special convention to choose their nominee. Therefore, voters will participate in only one election here later this year.
The Rundown Blog
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