We recapped our 2015 month-by-month (see December and links to all previous months here) and counted down our top-ten (numbers 6-10, number 5, number 4, number 3, number 2, number 1). Now here’s another look at our year with a look at our ten most-read stories of the year, as shown by Google Analytics. Before I start, I do want to say that we set ourselves what we felt like was an ambitious traffic goal; right now we are at over 160 percent of that goal. We reached the goal at the end of August. Many of our top-ten stories were originally reported and investigative stories, including stories broken first by NM Political Report. To the list:
10. Session recap: Dem Senators say Martinez ‘furious’ after session
Emotions were high after the end of the legislative session and when Senators went to inform the governor that the Senate had adjourned, a largely ceremonial task, she was like a “dictator who had been thwarted” according to Albuquerque Democrat Jerry Ortiz y Pino.
It would be very hard for the saga of Dianna Duran not to be number one this year, even before she went to jail. We are counted down the top ten stories through the end of the year with expanded recaps or personal recollections from the three members of the team. Previous: Stories 10-6. Number 5. Number 4.
The end of 2015 brought explosive news that the FBI were conducting investigations on New Mexico state government and Gov. Susana Martinez’ top political operative, Jay McCleskey. The first report, by the Santa Fe New Mexican, mentioned that federal authorities were looking into campaign spending by Martinez during her first gubernatorial campaign in 2010 and also spending from her first inaugural committee in 2011. We are counting down the top ten stories through the end of the year with expanded recaps or personal recollections from the three members of the team. Tune in each morning to see what the next story is. Previous: Stories 10-6.
After finding out the Albuquerque Public School’s deputy superintendent never completed a background check in his short two months on the job, I decided to perform one of my own. The deputy, Jason Martinez, left APS abruptly after being in the headlines for clashing over a contract with the school district’s Chief Financial Officer Don Moya. Martinez wanted to award a contract to a vendor where his friend worked. Moya opposed the idea because Martinez’ old friend had been implicated in a kickback scheme at Denver Public Schools. We are counting down the top ten stories through the end of the year with expanded recaps or personal recollections from the three members of the team.
I was walking out of the office late in July when I got a phone call from Justin Horwath, a reporter from The Santa Fe New Mexican with whom I’m a friend from his days at the Santa Fe Reporter. We hired his former roommate and co-worker Joey Peters to work at the same time as Justin joined The New Mexican. It was about one of Joey’s stories that he was calling about. I knew which one. Earlier that afternoon, we published a story where we reported “a leaked email from the state Taxation and Revenue Department last week was perhaps more transparent than the department intended.” We are counting down the top ten stories through the end of the year with expanded recaps or personal recollections from the three members of the team.
In March of 2014, Albuquerque Police were dispatched to the foothills area of Albuquerque in response to a homeless man who was camping illegally. What transpired in a matter of hours would leave the camper dead and the prompt still-ongoing issues on a local level with national attention. Almost a year after the shooting, then-Officer Dominique Perez and retired Detective Keith Sandy were charged with the murder of camper James Boyd. We are counting down the top ten stories through the end of the year with expanded recaps or personal recollections from the three members of the team. Tune in each morning to see what the next story is.
We are going to be counting down the top ten stories of the year now and after Christmas. In this installment, we are looking at the number 10 through number 6 stories of the year. Then, starting on December 26, we will count down the top five stories of the year with expanded recaps or personal recollections from the three members of the team. Tune in each morning to see what the next story is. We are counting down the top ten stories through the end of the year with expanded recaps or personal recollections from the three members of the team.
December isn’t over yet, but we’re going to have our recap today anyway. So this is a clear jinx for massive news happening before the calendar turns to January. The month seemed headed towards the sleepy (for news, not shopping) Christmas week and post-Christmas week when out of nowhere there was a thunderbolt in the form of phone calls from Governor Susana Martinez to Santa Fe police. The governor called the police to demand why hotel security had called police to escort her and others off the property after a loud hotel room party. She responded and apologized for some of the actions later that day.
Rumors of a federal investigation in New Mexico broke into actual news, as reports came down that Gov. Susana Martinez’s fundraising was under FBI scrutiny. We spoke to one former official who said the FBI asked about issues in the administration and later a report said the FBI was investigating audits from the state Taxation and Revenue Department. Note: Each weekday from here through December 22, we will be looking back at the top stories from each month here at NM Political Report. These could be the most-read stories, some interesting stories that didn’t get much attention or just plain important stories. Previous recaps: January.
Dianna Duran’s resignation and guilty pleas were the latest in what was one of the biggest stories of the year (if you want to see our top-ten stories, the countdown starts next week; spoiler alert: the Duran story is on there) and the latest in a busy, busy final few months of the year. Even after her guilty pleas, she still defended her public career and politicos throughout the state said it was time to move on. We looked at the next steps following her resignation and why Duran was able to keep her pension. Earlier, Duran’s attorney tried to argue that the Attorney General should not be on the case, which the AG’s office called ‘prosecutor shopping.’ This came even as Balderas added a 65th count of identity theft to her charges. Another big story that spanned the final few months of the year (and still continues, in fact) was over whether the Taxation and Revenue Department secretary was abusing her power by helping a former client.