Bill Clinton in Albuquerque.

Bill Clinton: ‘Do we want bridges or walls?’

Capping off a week of high profile presidential campaign visits in New Mexico, former President Bill Clinton rallied supporters of his wife in Southwest Albuquerque Wednesday afternoon. Speaking for just over 40 minutes, Clinton portrayed Hillary Clinton as an antidote to divisiveness in American and world politics. Related: Clinton makes surprise stop in Santa Fe restaurant

“We are living in a fascinating time that is full of both promise and peril,” Bill Clinton said. “Both progress and pain. And what you see all over the world today, all these arguments we’re having.

A protester burning a Donald Trump t-shirt outside the Albuquerque Convention Center.

Protests turn chaotic outside Trump rally

A protest that started hours before Donald Trump appeared in Albuquerque ended with police and protesters facing off, police shooting tear gas and protesters throwing rocks at police lined up between them and the Albuquerque Convention Center. For the most part, protesters chanted slogans protesting Trump—at least until the sun started to go down. Then, protesters streamed past the line set by police officers at 2nd and Tijeras, forced mounted police back and reached the second level of barriers. Peacekeepers from local community organizations lined up between the protesters and police, preserving the stalemate. Related: APD: Six officers injured, four protesters arrested at Trump protest

Then protesters broke past the last barrier and rushed to the locked doors of the Albuquerque Convention Center.

Donald Trump at CPAC 2011.Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore  cc

Big crowds of Trump supporters, protesters expected

The Albuquerque Police Department told media they are preparing for a big crowd Tuesday night when Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump brings his campaign to town. A police spokesman also said that they are not anticipating any problems from protesters who are already planning to gather at the same time Tuesday night. A group organizing the protest also is planning for a peaceful protest and is saying they’re seeing a large amount of online interest. Trump will be at the Albuquerque Convention Center, just days after Democratic U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders drew 7,000 supporters for a rally. So many media outlets were asking about the security for the rally that the Albuquerque Police Department called a press conference to address the issues.

Sen. Jerry Ortiz y Pino, D-Albuquerque, on the Senate floor speaking about marijuana legalization.

Lawmakers question HSD head over SNAP fraud scandal

Just days after a state senator called for the resignation of New Mexico Human Services Department Secretary Brent Earnest, the two kept things relatively cordial with one another in their first public meeting since then. Sen. Jerry Ortiz y Pino, D-Albuquerque, chair of the interim Legislative Health and Human Services, gave the floor to Earnest during the Monday morning committee hearing by the committee to explain how he is addressing allegations in several court testimonies of a department policy to falsify and delay emergency food benefit applications. “I don’t believe that anything has been said about what you’re doing about that,” Ortiz y Pino told Earnest. Last week, Ortiz y Pino made a statement calling the alleged practice “completely unacceptable.”

“If Secretary Earnest did not know this was happening, he failed to lead the agency,” his statement said. “If he did know, but did nothing, then this is may be a very serious legal matter.”

During the hearing Monday, Earnest explained that since the allegations first surfaced in April, his department launched an internal investigation and issued a written directive to employees telling them to follow federal guidelines.

Bernie Sanders

Sanders promises to stay in the fight until the end

With seven primary elections left, Democratic presidential candidate and U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders pledged to a packed Albuquerque Convention Center to continue his push for a political “revolution.”

Sanders said that he is “in this fight until the last battle.”

Sanders currently trails former Secretary of State, U.S. Senator and First Lady Hillary Clinton by 760 delegates. He’s quick to point out that 525 of Clinton’s delegates are super-delegates who pledged support for her on their own and without voter approval, a process he called “kinda dumb” and “undemocratic.”

Related: VIDEO: Bernie Sanders discusses New Mexico issues with NM Political Report. The Washington Post reported earlier this week that Sanders needs to win 67 percent of the remaining pledged delegates to take the lead. In an interview with CNN earlier this week, Clinton called her delegate lead “insurmountable.”

“Just because Hillary Clinton said something doesn’t necessarily make it the case,” Sanders told NM Political Report in a short interview before the rally. “We are now at about 46 percent of the pledged delegates.

Bernie Sanders speaks at the Santa Fe Community College

Santa Fe feels the Bern

Early Friday morning, Lucas Jimenez sat on a concrete slab outside Santa Fe Community College, waiting to rally behind his presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders, the senator who has ridden a populist wave railing against big banks and the “corrupt” campaign finance system, and picking up 40 percent of Democratic delegates in the process (so far). Jiminez wore a gray t-shirt emblazoned with the now-famous image of Sanders as a young civil rights activist in 1963, getting dragged away by Chicago police. It’s not unusual for Jimenez, 24, to be on campus at 8 am. He studies here full-time, working towards an associate’s degree in welding. Jimenez says his t-shirt symbolizes Sanders’ authenticity—“That he isn’t just talk.