I attended the New Mexico State Society holiday party Wednesday night with a colleague, and introduced him to New Mexico politics. I pointed out Rep. Steve Pearce, Rep. Tom Udall and, of course, Sen. Pete Domenici (Sen. Jeff Bingaman and Rep. Heather Wilson had already left the shindig). We dined on some New Mexican fare (taquitos and flautas) and sipped some New Mexican wine. All in all, not a bad evening.
Following the event, we ran into Martin Heinrich at a local bar. The meeting was very informal, but Heinrich seemed, to me, to have a good grasp of the issues that might decide the upcoming election. He knew that the Iraq War is still a major concern for voters in his district, and he espoused some wonderfully progressive ideas about the role of bloggers and new media. Chatting with a few Internet types, he was able to talk the lingo and knew how important a campaign’s online capacity is to success. He also said New Mexico is uniquely positioned to play a role in creating an energy-independent United States. I found him to be a very knowledgeable candidate on a variety of topics, and he’s a fan of Silver City: he said he made his decision to run for Congress while on vacation there.
Most important was Heinrich’s stance on the issue of FISA (and general democracy in America) – it’s very family-oriented, and spoken from the heart. You’ll see more about it in the coming days, but his desire to set things right is tangible. It bodes well for a strong progressive showing in New Mexico’s First Congressional District.