Recap of New Mexico COVID-19 news (6/05/20 edition)

This daily recap of COVID-19 news from New Mexico is available in a free daily email. Sign up here. See all of our COVID-19 coverage here. Note: The COVID-19 recap will now be Monday to Friday

The majority of the cases in New Mexico on Tuesday came from the Otero County Prison Facility, according to DOH. See the details here.Dr. David Scrase, the state Human Services Department Secretary, will give an update on COVID-19 in New Mexico on Friday at 12:30 p.m. The transmission rate of COVID-19 has dropped almost in half since late March, according to numbers from Presbyterian Healthcare Services and state officials. The Albuquerque Journal has more.Navajo Nation health officials reported 69 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 and five additional deaths related to the disease.

DOH: 110 more cases at Otero County Prison Facility; 218 in state overall, 8 additional deaths

The state Department of Health announced Thursday an additional 218 cases of COVID-19, the second day this week with at least 200 new cases, and eight additional deaths. Of the new cases, 110 are at the Otero County Prison Facility; 66 among those held by federal agencies and 44 among those held by the state Department of Corrections. The state of New Mexico now has 8,353 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 383 deaths related to the disease. With the newly reported cases, 4.3 percent of all cases in the state are among inmates at the Otero County Prison Facility among those held by either the federal government or the state. Among the eight newly announced COVID-19-related deaths, five were among residents of McKinley County, two from San Juan County and one from Bernalillo County.

Recap of New Mexico COVID-19 news (6/04/20 edition)

This daily recap of COVID-19 news from New Mexico is available in a free daily email. Sign up here. See all of our COVID-19 coverage here. NM Political Report did not have an edition of the COVID-19 recap on Wednesday because of election coverage on Tuesday night well into the early hours of Wednesday morning.The state saw a massive uptick in cases at the Otero County Prison Facility on Tuesday: 116 new cases, the majority of the state’s 227 confirmed cases reported that day. Wednesday, the state announced another 122 confirmed cases and eight additional deaths.The Santa Fe New Mexican wrote more about the spike in cases at the Otero County Prison Facility.Navajo Nation health officials announced 128 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 for the Navajo Nation and seven additional deaths related to the disease. This brings the total for the Navajo Nation to 5,661 confirmed cases and 259 deaths related to the disease.

Santa Fe, Taos counties need more time to count votes amid flood of absentee ballots

Most of the state completed their tallies of ballots, including absentee ballots, but election officials in Taos County and Santa Fe County received permission from district courts to extend the time needed to finish tallying absentee ballots. The two counties, like many others, received an unprecedented number of absentee ballots for a primary election, and numbers that even dwarfed high-turnout general elections in the past. It isn’t clear how many votes were cast by absentee ballots, but as of 5 p.m. on Election Day, county clerks had received more than 246,000 absentee ballots. In the 2016 primary, county clerks statewide received 23,066. Santa Fe County on its own received more than the statewide total in the 2016 primary.

State Senators John Arthur Smith, Mary Kay Papen lose in primary

In a historic defeat, Neomi Martinez-Parra won Senate District 35, defeating state Senator Sen. John Arthur Smith who has held the seat for 32 years. Martinez-Parra’s win did not come as a surprise Wednesday. She pulled ahead of Smith in the Democratic primary late Tuesday night and appeared to be the presumptive winner. She won by 500 votes. She received 2,793 votes to Smith’s 2,293 in unofficial results.

122 new confirmed COVID-19 cases, 8 additional deaths

The state Department of Health announced 122 additional cases of COVID-19, including 25 new cases among those held by federal agencies at the Otero County Prison Facility. The state also announced eight additional deaths related to the disease. As of Wednesday, New Mexico had found 8,140 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 375 deaths related to the disease. 

Of the newly announced deaths related to COVID-19, all came from residents of San Juan or McKinley counties. The state provided some information on each case, but did not disclose a specific underlying condition. A male in his 60s from McKinley County who was hospitalized and had underlying conditions.A male in his 70s from McKinley County who was hospitalized and had underlying conditions.A second male in his 70s from McKinley County who was hospitalized and had underlying conditions.A female in her 80s from McKinley County who was hospitalized.A male in his 80s from McKinley Countywho was hospitalized and had underlying conditions.A female in her 60s from San Juan County who was hospitalized and had underlying conditions.A male in his 60s from San Juan County who was hospitalized and had underlying conditions.A female in her 80s from San Juan County who was hospitalized and had underlying conditions.

Progressive Democrats defeat incumbents, with some races still pending

Tuesday night proved to be a night of historic upsets against state Senators who have long held onto their seats. Much of the action was on the Democratic side, though it appears two Republican incumbents also lost their primaries. State Sen. John Arthur Smith, after 32 years in the state Senate and the most powerful legislator as chair of the Senate Finance Committee, is extremely likely to lose to grassroots challenger Neomi Martinez-Parra. Smith represents SD 35. He more than doubled Martinez-Parra in donations.

Leger Fernandez wins CD3 Democratic primary

Democrat Teresa Leger Fernandez won the seven-way Democratic primary on Tuesday. 

As of 2 a.m., Leger Fernandez had 41.89 percent of the vote, while her closest competitor, former CIA officer Valerie Plame, had 22.95 percent of the vote. 

The Associated Press projected Leger Fernandez as the winner shortly before 11 p.m.

“This is a win for communities, families and workers all across our district, and I am grateful for the trust that voters have placed in our campaign’s vision for Northern New Mexico. Even in a time when we must continue to stay physically distant and so much tries to divide us, this campaign has always been about interconnectedness and coming together,” Leger Fernandez said in a statement. Related: Herrell wins GOP primary, will face Torres Small again for CD2 seat in general election

Leger Fernandez is an attorney and activist from Santa Fe who emphasized her roots in the district during her campaign. Fernandez received the support of a number of national organizations, including EMILY’s List and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund. She was often overshadowed on a national scale by Plame, whose ads showcasing her driving skills helped get her national attention and fundraising support.

DOH: 116 new cases at Otero County prison facility; 227 total new COVID-19 cases

The New Mexico Department of Health announced 227 additional positive cases in the state, with the majority coming from the Otero County Prison Facility. 

The state also announced five additional deaths related to the disease, with four of the five coming from northwestern New Mexico. With the 227 new cases, including 116 among those held by the state Department of Corrections at the Otero County Prison Facility, the state now has 8,024 confirmed cases of COVID-19. The number of deaths of New Mexicans related to the disease is now 367. Detention centers have seen many massive outbreaks throughout the country, something that New Mexico had largely avoided until now. The 116 new cases bring the total number of those held by the state of New Mexico at the Otero County Prison Facility to 162; another 66 held by federal agencies at the facility have also tested positive, though no new cases were reported Tuesday.

Primary preview: Races to watch on Election Day

A strange and unique election primary comes to an end today. Elections officials will begin counting ballots after 7:00 p.m., though they have been preparing to process a record-breaking flood of absentee ballots, the most returned ballots of any primary by a significant margin and likely more than any general election as well.*

Results will likely not be available in close races on Tuesday night because of the process needed to count absentee ballots. Today’s elections will feature several key races, including federal and legislative. Federal

U.S. Senate

The Republican primary for the U.S. Senate seat to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Tom Udall is among the most highly watched in the state. The party’s primary includes three candidates: Former TV weatherman Mark Ronchetti, anti-abortion activist Elisa Martinez and former Trump administration official Gavin Clarkson.