Thursday, October 27, 2011

Common Cause Luncheon Saturday

Our friends at Common Cause are hosting their annual luncheon this weekend- Saturday, October 29 from 12:00-2:00 PM at the Continuing Ed building at UNM. They will be presenting the Jack Taylor Award to state senator Peter Wirth for his ongoing leadership on clean election laws. There will also be a panel discussion on the future of campaign financing laws.

To sign up, visit their website at or call 505-323-6399. Cost is $20 and includes lunch. Please support Common Cause's valuable work in New Mexico.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

More Money in Politics

Last week, local newspapers published financial reports of state and federal candidates. Unfortunately, for the mass media, raising money is becoming synonymous with winning. Our elections are becoming less about debating the critical issues facing our state and nation, and more about marketing and negative campaigning.

At the same time, Public Regulation Commission candidate Danny Maki declared that he would not be using public campaign financing. His donation report shows exactly why we need public financing in this important post. Maki avoided directly breaking the campaign code restrictions on who can donate to PRC candidates (see the below post for more on this trend), but he is clearly an industry insider, or trying to become one.

It is way beyond time to break this cycle. On top of what is happening with candidates, we can also expect to see over the top spending by independent groups due to the Supreme Court's ridiculous ruling in Citizens United. Election 2012 will certainly be the most expensive in US history, but people power can overcome corporate power. It's up to us to make sure it does.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Money in Politics

Today's Santa Fe New Mexican highlights this state's ongoing problem with money in politics. Two headline stories focus on what should be illegal donations to our state's leaders.

One points out that Governor Martinez accepted over $400,000 to her various campaign funds during the legislative period just ended. The period is even called a prohibited period in state campaign law, but Governor Martinez points out it is only illegal to solicit donations, not to accept them.

Across the street, Attorney General Gary King has accepted a $15,000 donation to help repay his 2010 campaign debt, in spite of a newly passed law limiting individual contributions to $5,000 each. It's ok, says the man charged with enforcing New Mexico's laws, because it is for a past campaign not a current one.

All this comes as a group of Republicans is trying to overturn the law in our state Supreme Court, claiming it interferes with their First Amendment right to free spending.

Money is not speech. Corporations are not people. Government is not for sale.

It is time to take our Democracy back. Occupy Santa Fe!

Monday, October 3, 2011


Residents of Albuquerque are encouraged to get out and vote in tomorrow's municipal election. Candidates for city council and 12 ballot questions are to be decided.

And everyone is encouraged to go to and vote in their opinion poll, which asks about the recent special legislative session, called to redistrict the state's Congressional, PRC, and legislative districts. There is even an option for an independent redistricting commission!