Dec 10 2017

First Friday Luncheon and Other Announcements

New DNC logo-thumb-452x148-33275

Sandoval County Democrats December News 

The Sandoval County Commission is scheduled to consider their Right to Work ordinance on Thursday, December 14, 2017.  Check the Sandoval County web site for the agenda that has not yet been posted as I write this. Come to the meeting to let the Commissioners know that this ordinance is unnecessary, will not help economic development in our county and will cost us thousands in later legal fees to fight an illegal ordinance.  Some folks refer to this effort as Right to Work for Less – an initiative of the Koch funded Americans for Prosperity (for Billionaires)

When you get out your calendar for 2018, be sure to enter the First Friday luncheon  on January 5, 2018 at the Range in Bernalillo from 11:30 to 1 PM.  We’ll hear about the upcoming legislative session and hear from candidates, including, but not limited to, Joe Cervantes for Governor and Bill McCamley for Auditor.  With more candidates announcing everyday, we’ll invite them to introduce themselves to us as well.

At the last First Friday luncheon, we discussed the GOP Tax Scam working its way through the Congress.  Folks are encouraged to call Senators Udall and Heinrich to thank them for standing strong in the Senate and to make calls to neighboring states to ask representatives to oppose this enormous hold-up of the middle class.

Vicki Harrison from Common Cause New Mexico was our featured speaker.  She works on good government issues, ethics and voters rights.  Some of the issues that Vicki will bring to the 2018 legislative session include an Ethics Commission, automatic voter registration, and adequate policies and procedures to encourage reporting of sexual harassment. Vicki also presented a card which ranks all our elected New Mexico representatives and senators according to their support for good government.  You can obtain this information at or on the Common Cause NM web site:

Garrett Vene Klassen and Stephanie Garcia Richard, both candidates for NM Land Commissioner, presented their positions for that office.

County Commissioner Ken Eichwald addressed the luncheon as well and received thanks for representing us on the Commission.

We also heard from County Probate Judge candidate Eddie Torres as well as R. Benton Howell running for House District 44.

Tom Swisstack, running for Mayor of Rio Rancho, asked folks to go to his website – to volunteer on his campaign.

Chris Daul announced events for Kathy Bruch, candidate for County Commission District 1.

Alexis Jimenez, chair of Ward E, announced her candidacy for House District 60 representing Rio Rancho.

Victor Reyes spoke for Michele Lujan Grisham’s campaign for Governor.  Chris Garcia announced the campaign kick-off events for Congressman Ben Ray Lujan and Bill Mast talked about his re-election campaign for Magistrate Judge in Sandoval County.

Sandoval Democrats worked to fulfill the wishes of needy families who participate in the PB and J Family Services Program in Bernalillo.  Through your generosity, Christmas is going to be happier for several families in our community.

The Democratic Party of Sandoval County will select delegates to the State Pre-Primary Convention which will be held March 10, 2018.  Our Wards will meet on February 3, 2018,  and the County Convention follows.  We are working on the details now and will post the information on our web site – when it is finalized.

We wish you a wonderful holiday with friends and family.  Gather your energy for the challenges ahead.  Let’s sweep the municipal elections March 6, 2018!  And then its on to the Primary election June 5, 2018 and the election of a new Governor on November 6, 2018.  Let’s flip the US House of Representatives then as well!


472 Priestley Road
Corrales, NM 87048

Check our calendar for other events and meetings.

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Oct 07 2017

Boisterous meeting over right-to-work in Sandoval County By Matthew Reichbach

A Sandoval County Commission meeting attracted a boisterous crowd Thursday night, as passions ran high over a proposed right-to-work ordinance.

The capacity crowd remained mostly respectful, at least until after public comment and once the commissioners began speaking. One commissioner compared unions to the mafia and then singled out a teacher who commented earlier and blamed teachers unions for poor education of students.

Right-to-work laws, which are in place in more than half the states in the country, bar unions from imposing mandatory fees on workers. The proposed ordinance would not apply to current companies and unions in the county.

Read the rest of the story in the NMPolitical Report here.

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Oct 02 2017

American Federation of Teachers New Mexico Announces Early Endorsements for 2018 Candidates Statewide Candidates for Secretary of State, Treasurer, and Attorney General are Champions for Educators and Working New Mexicans

October 2, 2017
Contact: John Dyrcz

Albuquerque – American Federation of Teachers New Mexico President Stephanie Ly and AFT NM Committee on Political Education Chair Sara Attleson released the following statements:

“We are proud to endorse Maggie Toulouse Oliver, Tim Eichenberg, and Hector Balderas for their 2018 re-election campaigns. AFT NM’s Committee on Political Education asked candidates to complete questionnaires detailing their positions on public education and labor issues in New Mexico, and each of these candidates share our values, without hesitation or reservation,” said Attleson.

“We believe AFT NM’s endorsed candidates represent strong, progressive voices who share our values and believe New Mexico’s students, schools, and communities can excel from birth through career, and that a strong, respected working class is the foundation for New Mexico’s success. We will work to ensure each of these candidates are re-elected and look forward continuing our partnership with each of them in Santa Fe,” said Ly.


AFT NM’s Executive Committee, in late September, voted to endorse the 2018 re-election campaigns of  Maggie Toulouse Oliver for New Mexico Secretary of State, Tim Eichenberg for New Mexico Treasurer, and Hector Balderas for New Mexico Attorney General, based on their questionnaire responses, campaign platforms, and tenure in office. In August, AFT NM reached out to both major political parties in New Mexico encouraging candidates running for office to complete an endorsement questionnaire.

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Jul 11 2017

Steve Pearce Should Never Be Governor – July 10, 2017

Steve Pearce’s extreme voting record hurts New Mexico.
• If Steve Pearce thinks he should be governor after voting against the interests of
New Mexicans and supporting an extreme right-wing agenda, he should know he
can’t fool voters.
• Pearce would push the same failed Republican economic agenda of the past seven
• Democrats are going to hold Pearce accountable for his failure to stand up for the
community on healthcare, on policies that will drive job creation, and community
efforts to protect our state’s public lands.
• After eight years of Gov. Susana Martinez’s failed economic leadership, New Mexico
needs a change – not a Donald Trump clone like Steve Pearce.
• Steve Pearce has proven to be a far-right ideologue outside the mainstream of New
• Steve Perce’s support of the extreme Republican agenda would potentially take
health care away from 250,000 New Mexicans, kill approximately 11,000 jobs, and
put a $678 million burden on hospitals in the state.
• Pearce wrote a letter to the Department of Interior undermining community efforts to
protect the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks National Monument, which has a direct
impact on New Mexico’s economy.
New Mexico needs a Democrat in the second congressional district.
• New Mexico’s second congressional district is in play.
• Since the 2016 election we’ve seen an increased interest in the Democratic Party
from people across this district and we’re working on building this grassroots effort.
• With this energy we will surely register new voters, organize more events, and
support our candidates come election time.
• Any Republican in this seat will vote for harmful bills that don’t benefit our community
and instead give unfair advantages to millionaires and billionaires.
• Democratic values are New Mexico values— Democrats believe that we’re greater
together than we are on our own, that New Mexico succeeds when everyone gets a
fair shot, everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same rules.
• Republicans in Congress are looking to take health care away from people right here
in Southern New Mexico, and Congressman Pearce voted for that bill.
• A strong Democratic candidate will be ready to take on the Republican nominee and
be a champion for working families in New Mexico’s second district.
• Democrats know that New Mexicans work hard—we value family, we value dignity,
and we value respect.

Background on Pearce’s Record
HEADLINE: Pearce votes yes as House passes sweeping healthcare bill. [New Mexico Political Report, 5/4/17]

Pearce Called the GOP House Health Care Bill “A Step in the Right Direction.”
According to the New Mexico Political Report, “In a statement, Pearce said ‘While
today’s bill is in no way perfect, it is a step in the right direction.’ He continued: ‘My
decision on today’s health care bill, as with all bills, came down to its overall impact on
the lives of the New Mexican people. This is a step-by-step approach, of which this is
merely the first.’ Pearce is part of the House Freedom Caucus, a hardline conservative
bloc of House members that successfully pushed the health care legislation to the right
after a failed repeal attempt in March.”

So Far in 2017, Pearce Has Voted with Trump 94.6% of the Time. According to
FiveThirtyEight, So far in 2017, Rep. Pearce has voted in line with President Trump’s
position 94.6%. [FiveThirtyEight, 6/29/17]

January 2017: Pearce Said Trump’s Travel Ban Would Further “The Safety of Our
Nation.” According to a post on Pearce’s Facebook page, “The clunky roll out of
President Trump’s recent order on refugees shows the youth, but also the ambition, of a
new Administration. The goal of this order, however, is one we can all agree on – the
safety of our nation. With this short term halt on certain visas, our nation can take a
comprehensive assessment of the refugee and visa admission process to ensure our
procedures are placing the safety and security of our nation first. I applaud DHS
Secretary Kelly for working through the stumbled introduction of the order, to act on
provisions laid out in President Trumps order that permit lawful permanent residents and
green card holders admission into the United States. I hope the Trump Administration
takes immediate action to follow through on its plan to revise our security procedures so
we can return to a safer America.” [Facebook, Congressman Steve Pearce, 1/30/17]

2017: Pearce Cosponsored HR 354, “Defund Planned Parenthood Act of
2017.” [, HR 354, 1/6/17]

Opposed Minimum Wage Increase. In 2007, Pearce voted against increasing the
minimum wage from by $2.10 an hour to $7.25 an hour. The measure passed 218-212.
[HR 1591, Vote #186, 3/23/07]

Named One of the Most Corrupt Members of Congress in 2007 and 2008. In
September 2007 and September 2008, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in
Washington (CREW) named Pearce to their lists of the 22 and 20 most corrupt
members of Congress.

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Jun 15 2017

State Rank on Child Well-Being Reveals Failure of Republican Policies, Success of Democratic Initiatives

Tuesday, June 13, 2017
Photos Attached
Contact: Felicia Salazar
Phone: (505) 750-2585

New Mexico – Today, New Mexico’s rank in child well-being revealed a dramatic contrast between the failure of Republican policies and success of Democratic initiatives.

Democratic Party of New Mexico Chair Richard Ellenberg highlighted the stark difference between the policies saying, “Democrats believe that New Mexicans are resilient and powerful, and we can work to increase opportunities and improve the quality of life for everyone. This report makes it clear that Democratic policies improve the lives of our children and have a positive impact on New Mexico families; where as, Republican policies in education have kept our state at the bottom. The contrast couldn’t be more clear.”

According to the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Kids Count Data Book, New Mexico remains dead last in education—an area the Martinez-Sanchez administration has taken steps to privatize, increase testing and push teachers out of the profession. On the other hand, child health has seen significant gains—largely due to greater access to health services through the Affordable Care Act.

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Jun 08 2017

American Federation of Teachers New Mexico React to Resignation of Secretary Hanna Skandera Skandera Latest in High-Level Exodus from Martinez Administration

June 8, 2017
Contact: John Dyrcz

Albuquerque – American Federation of Teachers New Mexico President Stephanie Ly released the following statement:

“The resignation of New Mexico Public Education Secretary Hanna Skandera is welcome news for New Mexico’s educators.

“While we recognize this is an opportunity to reset the course New Mexico’s public education has taken under Governor Martinez and Secretary Skandera, and we sincerely hope her replacement is willing to meaningfully include stakeholder input and work towards strengthening education as a profession, recognizing that a strong system of public education is the foundation of a successful society.

“On Governor Martinez and Secretary Skandera’s watch in New Mexico, our State slid from 37th to 49th in the nation in the quality of our public education, was subjected to relentless attacks on public schools in favor of charter and private schools, had to fight against voucher schemes raiding public school funding, fought mandatory flunking of our students based on standardized testing, was subjected to abusive levels of over-testing of our students, and faced the institution of the nation’s most punitive evaluation system which has contributed to historic shortages of educators and students studying to enter the field of education.

“Whomever is named as the new Secretary of Education in New Mexico, they will have to quickly use their position to advocate for New Mexico’s public schools to avoid millions of dollars of cuts under President Trump’s proposed budget, potentially further harming an already fragile and underfunded system in New Mexico. We are ready to work together with a new Secretary, and are calling on Governor Martinez to name a replacement with deep and meaningful education experience who is equally ready to work with educators, parents, communities, and other stakeholders in an honest and productive way, prioritizes New Mexico students and educators.”

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May 06 2017

Where do we go from here

OK, Indivisiblists, we lost this round In the House of Representatives….barely. We need to keep in mind, however, that this is long fight, and the Republican majority is weaker from the positions many of them took during their fight to destroy affordable healthcare for all Americans. We need to stay organized, stay focused, and make those same Republicans pay for their votes on this issue.

Steve Pearce – you clearly don’t care about the welfare of New Mexico and New Mexicans.  You will never become Governor of New Mexico (I have heard that you might want that job). I will work hard to make sure that never happens.  I will work hard to make you fight to keep the job you have right now.

This battle has been a wake up call to Democrats, progressives, liberals, and all Americans who believe in fairness and justice.  We have been getting complacent, and we need to check that.  Progressive groups have had a surge in donations since this bill was past.  Moreover, you have probably seen quite a few articles in the press that indicate that, in winning this battle, Trump and the Republicans have really stirred a hornet’s nest. has a great web page full of information about where we go from here and how we win this war.  Check it out and check out the video as well.

The next healthcare fight is in the Senate.  Trumpcare will have a very difficult time there.  And don’t forget to keep the pressure on the Trump administration about Russia.  Call our Senators (Heinrich is on the Senate Select Committee for Intelligence).  Call your Congressman.  Call the Justice Department. Write letters to the editor.

Continue the Resistance

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May 06 2017

Teacher Appreciation Week

Since 1984, the National Parent Teacher Association has designated the first full week in May as “Teacher Appreciation Week.”

We know here at AFT NM it is more than just the teacher who helps to create a positive environment in our public schools – it is the educational assistants, support personnel, nurses, transportation, councilors, facilities personnel, secretaries, and cafeteria workers who all lend a hand to our students’ successful learning.

We also know that successful students’ education begins with our earliest learners even before public school and continues through higher education, and eventually will lead to a lifelong career.

Every educator contributes to the successes of our students, and no so-called reforms or top-down mandates can ever replace the role you play in our students’ lives and academic journey. The work you do matters and cannot be overstated, and we will continue to support you in every way that we can.

For all of the educators who play a part – we say “THANK YOU!”

Each educator’s hard work deserves to be recognized and honored, not only this week, but throughout the year. We hope that your week has been filled with many parents and students saying “Thank You!”

In Solidarity,

Stephanie Ly

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Apr 30 2017

New Mexico Has New Democratic Party Leadership Team

Contact: Felicia Salazar
Phone: (505)750-2585

New Democratic Leadership Will Continue Democratic Momentum through Grassroots Efforts & Statewide Voter Engagement

New Mexico – On Saturday, the Democratic Party of New Mexico (DPNM) elected a new leadership team to guide the Party into the 2018 election. Richard Ellenberg (Santa Fe) will serve as state Party chair, Naomi Martinez Parra (Lordsburg) will serve as vice chair, Katharine Clark will serve as secretary, and Robert Lara (Las Cruces) will continue to serve as Treasurer.

“Democrats are united and working hard to make sure we never have another governor like Governor Susana Martinez nor a disaster like Donald Trump,” said Richard Ellenberg, the newly-elected chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico. “I look forward to the state Party supporting the efforts of our volunteers and continuing to build a strong grassroots network.”

The new officers are well-positioned to continue Democratic success into the 2018 election. The outgoing Democratic Party Officers worked to eliminate the Party’s debt, regain a Democratic majority in the New Mexico House of Representatives, expand the majority in the New Mexico Senate, and elect a Democratic Secretary of State.

“New Mexicans deserve opportunities to make our lives better, and we know Democrats work to for New Mexico families in all levels of government,” said Neomi Martinez-Parra, the newly-elected DPNM Vice Chair. “We’ll be working to further enhance the lines of communication between the Democratic National Committee, our state party, county chairs, SCC members and our constituency. Above al, l we will work to get Democrats elected so New Mexico has a brighter future.”

The new leadership team was elected by the Democratic Party of New Mexico’s State Central Committee (SCC), at this weekend’s SCC Meeting. Each member of the new Democratic leadership team will serve a two-year term. At the meeting, Democrats heard from elected officials, worked on grassroots campaign organizing and looked ahead to the 2018 election.

“I look forward to working to keep New Mexico Blue and the State Party in the black. As we move forward, the work to retain our majorities in the State House, retake the Governor’s office, and maintain our blue federal delegation will be at the top of our priorities list,” said DPNM Treasurer Robert Lara, who begins his second term as state Party Treasurer.  “When we work together, can we help the entire state move forward together. Lets get to work.”

The new DPNM Secretary Katharine Clark stated, “As Secretary of the Democratic Party of New Mexico, I’m looking forward to maximizing coordination with all our hardworking Democrats and using my experience to reach voters in all parts of the state.

The Democratic Party has seen renewed engagement in efforts to resist the Trump and Martinez-Sanchez Administrations’ reckless Republican agendas. Over the past few weeks, thousands of New Mexico Democrats gathered to reorganize on the county level and elected 17 new county party chairs. This year’s changes in leadership reflect an energized group of New Mexico Democrats who are ready to organize and stand up for all New Mexicans no matter where they live or their background.

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Apr 05 2017

Gov. Martinez Leaves State with More Than 200 Bills on Her Desk, Lt. Gov. John Sanchez Does Nothing

Contact: Felicia Salazar
Phone: (505)750-2585

New Mexico – News broke that Governor Martinez spent the first part of this week in Tennessee while she has more than 200 bills on her desk and only until Friday to sign them. Meanwhile acting governor, Lt. Governor John Sanchez took no responsibility to sign legislation that would increase opportunities for New Mexicans across the state.

“Governor Martinez clearly does not respect our state — instead of doing her job, the Governor leaves the state in the hands of Lieutenant Governor Sanchez, who follows lock step in her reckless policy decisions,” said DPNM Chairwoman Debra Haaland. “Democrats passed bills that focus on job creation, improving education, creating opportunity for New Mexico businesses, and putting our state on better economic footing; these bills need attention before the deadline.”

While legislators were hard at work during the 60-day session this year, Governor Martinez was in Utah on a ski trip, instead of doing her job. And since then, the Governor has avoided doing her job, irresponsibly threatening to shutdown state government and furlough state employees who have families that rely on their income. Lieutenant Governor John Sanchez echoed Governor Martinez’s irresponsible stance instead of voicing support for budget that includes important revenues that mitigate cuts to public schools, health care, and other critical services.

Martinez and Sanchez refuse to heed the warning that Moody’s analytics sent to other states when the Republican Kansas Governor vetoed important revenue increases and gave them a negative credit rating. A lower credit rating leads to a waste of taxpayer dollars by increasing the cost of important infrastructure projects that lead to economic development and opportunity.

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