New Mexicans are selecting a U.S. senator this election, as well as deciding on three seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, including the 3rd Congressional District that includes Santa Fe. Here are our endorsements for Senate and the House.
In the Senate, Democratic incumbent Martin Heinrich is asking voters for a second term. He is a measured politician, able to balance the needs of his liberal constituents with those voters who are more to the center and even the right. He brings people together on issues of support for New Mexico’s great outdoors, the need to protect our public lands, and our state’s genuine dislike for the ugly politics of nativism and prejudice that are souring the national mood.
Unlike many showboats in the Senate, Heinrich does his work diligently and with little fanfare, spending less time as a TV talking head and more time in his district or reaching across the aisle to work on issues that benefit New Mexicans.
Despite the unpleasant nature of our national discourse, much good has been done for the interests of New Mexicans, with Heinrich working with other members of our congressional delegation to ensure we are not forgotten. He understands the importance of national laboratories and military bases to our economy (some $3.1 billion annually), but also encourages spin-off industries and wins additional dollars for environmental cleanup at Los Alamos National Laboratory.
He has been a champion for the environment, pushing back on the Trump administration’s desire to weaken methane standards and fighting for the renewal of the Land and Water Conservation Fund. He is unflinching in his support for public lands, with his love of the wilderness — whether hiking, hunting or fishing — shining through. Heinrich’s ability to work in a bipartisan fashion, encouraging Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke out to New Mexico to see our land personally, helped secure the Sabinoso Wilderness for public access. It is this ability to set aside partisanship and work with others of different philosophies for the common good that we value.
Even so, Heinrich does not back down on core issues. He can be counted on. Heinrich has backed sensible gun-safety legislation, voted to protect the Supreme Court from extreme justices and will fight for Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid social safety net programs. He understands that immigration is more complicated than simply building a wall or demonizing people living in the country illegally. Heinrich has in the past and will in the future vote to protect Dreamers, the young people who came as children. We expect him to work hard to help craft bipartisan, comprehensive and compassionate immigration reform that protects both borders and people.
Most of all, in a political scene where the screamers dominate, a senator like Martin Heinrich — someone who works methodically, diligently and with principle — is sorely needed in Washington, D.C.
Seeking re-election in a three-person race, Heinrich is working hard to deserve every vote so he can get back to work for New Mexico. For Senate, Martin Heinrich.
U.S. House of Representatives
U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján is doing a good job for the 3rd Congressional District.
As a Democrat in a GOP-majority House, Luján lacks the power of, say, a Bill Richardson back in the day when Democrats ruled the roost. That hasn’t stopped Luján.
What’s more, as chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, he will receive a boost should the GOP lose the House in November. He will have led the group that helped Democrats take back control; that’s real clout. A Democratic House will mean more influence for the member of Congress from Nambé and a stronger voice for New Mexico.
That’s just one reason to vote for Luján. We also like his attention to the bread-and-butter issues so important to New Mexicans, whether money for internet service on school buses (important for children in rural communities), legislation to make acequias eligible for federal funding or bills to increase high-speed internet through the Tribal Connect Act. His expertise on dealing with the opioid epidemic is important, too, and several of his priorities made it into House legislation passed earlier this year. For vulnerable populations, whether in New Mexico or the nation, Luján will vote to maintain the social safety net, keep food programs funded and invest in programs that help, rather than hurt, people in need.
Best of all for his constituents in Santa Fe and across the 3rd District, Luján continues to grow in office — taking on hard issues, adding responsibility within the Democratic caucus and expanding his expertise on issues. First elected in 2008, we believe voters should send him back to Washington. For Congress, Ben Ray Luján.
Friday: City charter amendments
Today: U.S. Senate, House Sunday: Governor
Monday: Supreme Court justice, Court of Appeals judges
Tuesday: Statewide offices
Wednesday: Bonds, constitutional amendments, regional transit district tax
Thursday: State House of Representatives, Santa Fe County Commission