NM GOP remembers communication director Keene

Tragedy struck the Republican Party of New Mexico as their young communications director passed away. Tucker Keene, 25, had been the communications director of the state party since January of 2016. Party chairman Ryan Cangiolosi announced the news in an email Monday morning. “It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that I write to inform you of the sudden passing of our dear friend and colleague W. Tucker Keene,” Cangiolosi wrote. “He was a brilliant writer, tenacious promoter of our cause, keen political communicator and most importantly, a wonderful person,” Cangiolosi continued.

State law doesn’t address concerns in latest GOP complaint against PAC

The state Republican Party is targeting a liberal political action committee for donating directly to Democratic candidates in state legislative races. The Republican Party of New Mexico wrote a complaint to the New Mexico Secretary of State’s Office citing donations from Enchantment PAC to Senate Majority Leader Michael Sanchez, D-Belen, and Democrat Natalie Figueroa, who is challenging state House Majority Leader Nate Gentry, R-Albuquerque, as “against New Mexico statutes” and “in clear violation of the law.”

Enchantment PAC, which is also funding liberal advocacy organizations like Organizing in the Land of Enchantment, gave $1,000 to Sanchez and $600 to Figueroa during the general election cycle. State law, however, does not address the type of spending the GOP cited in its complaint. Reached by phone, GOP spokesman Tucker Keene referred to the written complaint, which he said the party sent in the mail to the Secretary of State on Tuesday. “Independent expenditure committees are not supposed to spend directly to candidates, they’re required by law to be independent,”  Keene said earlier in a statement.

‘Threatening’ GOP mailer angers recipients

“When Democrats win the election and you didn’t do your part to stop it… Your neighbors will know.”

That’s the message on a mailer from the New Mexico Republican Party encouraging early voting. This piece originally appeared at New Mexico In Depth and is reprinted with permission. But not everyone is thrilled by it. “I feel like this is a threat,” said Dusty Deen, a 35-year-old Roswell resident who received the mailer this week. The flier features a woman peeking out her blinds “as though she voted for Hillary and they’re forming a mob,” said Deen, who is an unaffiliated voter..

State GOP (and a handful of Sanders supporters) call on state Democratic Party chair to resign

The Republican Party of New Mexico says the chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico should step down because of her actions at the Democratic pre-primary convention earlier this year. The state Republicans say that the cancellation of a non-binding presidential preference poll at the pre-primary convention in March shows the state party had bias toward Hillary Clinton. The party previously criticized Haaland for supporting Clinton after she defeated Bernie Sanders in the New Mexico Democratic primary, saying it was against Democratic party rules. “Much like Debbie Wasserman Schultz and the DNC, Haaland’s and the DPNM establishment’s bias toward Clinton was clear throughout the primary,” RPNM spokesman Tucker Keene said. “Haaland broke party rules to shelter her favored candidate from the embarrassment of losing a straw poll.

Trump campaign to air ads in New Mexico

The general election presidential race is coming to New Mexico. Or at least, it is through TV and digital ads. The Associated Press, and other outlets, reported late last week that Donald Trump’s campaign would be spending a total of $140 million on ads in 13 states. This is $100 million on TV ads and $40 million on digital advertising. From the AP:
The Trump campaign is targeting key battleground states like Florida, North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania, along with Michigan, Maine, New Mexico, Wisconsin and others.

SOS candidates face attacks for their parties’ presidential candidates

In a sign of just how unpopular the two presidential candidates for major parties are, both Secretary of State candidates are fielding attacks for supporting their own party’s nominee. The Democratic Party of New Mexico hammered Republican Secretary of State candidate Nora Espinoza for speaking at rallies headlined by Trump running mate Mike Pence. “Nora Espinoza’s embracing Donald Trump’s misguided values will do nothing to restore integrity to the secretary of state’s office or to help implement the reforms New Mexico needs,” DPNM Vice-Chair Juan Sanchez III said in a statement earlier this week. Related: Poll: Clinton leads Trump in NM, Toulouse Oliver leads SOS race

Friday, the Republican Party of New Mexico responded by saying Democratic candidate Maggie Toulouse Oliver’s support of Hillary Clinton was problematic. “Toulouse Oliver cannot credibly campaign on an ethics platform if she thinks Hillary Clinton should be president despite her long history of dishonesty and crooked dealings,” RPNM spokesman Tucker Keene said in a statement.

Trump

Trump’s ABQ fundraiser looks like it didn’t raise much

Only five New Mexicans gave a total of $32,000 to the joint fundraising committee that held a $10,000-per-person event in Albuquerque in late May. It’s unlikely the Trump Victory joint fundraising committee raised the $230,000 some might have expected for the May 24 event attended by 23 people who had paid to be there. A spokesman for the New Mexico GOP gave NMID that attendance number last month. Three New Mexicans donated $10,000 each while two others gave $1,000 each to the Trump Victory committee, according to a report filed Friday with the Federal Election Commission listing donations through June 30. Another joint fundraising committee for presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump netted $13,450 from New Mexicans during the same period, records show.

Trump fundraising woes in New Mexico mirror national scene

New Mexicans donated only a little more than $11,000 to Donald Trump’s campaign in May. And it’s unclear who donated how much – if anything – at a publicized $10,000 per person fundraiser with the presumptive GOP presidential nominee in conjunction with his May 24 Albuquerque rally. This piece originally appeared at New Mexico In Depth and is reused with permission. Two joint fundraising committees affiliated with the RNC and Trump’s campaign won’t file reports until July 15. It’s possible those committees haven’t distributed money to the Trump campaign or the Republican National Committee, which must file monthly reports.

Dems say Trump not welcome in NM

Hours ahead of presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump’s appearance in New Mexico, Democrats who support Hillary Clinton slammed him at a press conference. Former Albuquerque mayor Martin Chavez recounted when a white supremacist group sought to meet near Albuquerque. Chavez said he issued a “Proclamation of Un-welcome” against the group. “I said New Mexico and Albuquerque are not a place where we welcome people who hate,” he said. “Today we should issue a proclamation of unwelcome to Donald Trump,” Chavez continued.

Reporters will be allowed to cover GOP convention after all

The Republican Party of New Mexico announced on Wednesday that members of the press will, indeed, be able to cover the party’s statewide Quadrennial Convention. The announcement came a day after officials from Sandia Pueblo said press would not be allowed on the Sandia Casino grounds to cover the convention. The Sandia Tribal council reversed the decision Wednesday, according to a press release from the Republican Party of New Mexico. The release from the party said it was a “surprise” that the Sandia Tribal Council announced the decision to bar reporters from the event. In a statement, Republican Party of New Mexico spokesperson Tucker Keene said the party was unaware that press would be barred from covering the event at the casino and that the convention would have been held somewhere else otherwise.