While national pundits ponder whether or not a “blue wave” or “red wall” materialized nationwide in the midterm elections, it’s clear New Mexico Democrats did very well in the 2018 midterm elections.
New Mexico Federal Update:
U.S. Senate: Martin Heinrich (D)
Incumbent United States Senator Martin Henrich reelected to a second term with 54.09% of the vote.
New Mexico 1st Congressional District: Deb Haaland (D)
Haaland wins with 59.13% of the vote. She is an enrolled member of the Laguna Pueblo, and is one of the first Native American women to be elected to Congress.
New Mexico 2nd Congressional District: Xochitl Torres Small (D)
After a close election, both candidates declared victory and neither conceded, but once the Secretary of State certified final elections results including approximately 8,000 absentee ballots, Xochitl Torres Small (D) emerged as the victor with a margin of less than 4,000 votes (50.93% of the vote).
New Mexico 3rd Congressional District: Ben Ray Luján (D)
Congressman Ben Ray Luján reelected to a sixth term with 63.38% of the vote. Luján was recently selected by the Democratic Caucus for the leadership role of Assistant Democratic Leader, the fourth highest position in leadership of the new Democratic majority in the house.
New Mexico Statewide Races:
Governor/Lt. Governor: Michelle Lujan Grisham/Howie Morales (D) – 57.2% of the vote.
State Land Commissioner: Stephanie Garcia Richard (D) – 51.1% of the vote.
State Auditor: Brian Colón (D) – 57.56% of the vote.
State Treasurer: Tim Eichenberg (D) – 57.92% of the vote.
Attorney General: Hector Balderas (D) – 61.81% of the vote.
Secretary of State: Maggie Toulouse Oliver (D) – 57.76% of the vote.
New Mexico Supreme Court:
State Supreme Court Justice: Michael Vigil (D) – 59.17% of the vote
New Mexico Court of Appeals:
In an historic election, Kristina Bogardus, Jacqueline Medina, Briana Zamora, Megan Duffy and Jennifer Attrep all won seats on the Court of Appeals. At least eight of the ten judges on the Court will be women. Judge J. Miles Hanisee will be the only man serving on the Court. Sitting appellate judge Michael Vigil won election to the Supreme Court; his seat on the Court of Appeals will be filled by the appointment by Governor-elect Lujan Grisham.
New Mexico State House:
Republicans suffered significant losses in the NM House, losing up to 7 seats to Democratic opponents. While several the results of several close votes remain pending (with recounts recently ordered in several races with razor thin margins), Democrats may expand their majority to between 46-47 out of the 70 total seats in the House. This will be the biggest Democratic majority in the NM House since 1996.
New Mexico Public Regulation Commission:
Democratic candidates won two out of the three NM Public Regulation Commission (“PRC”) seats up for election this cycle. Former state Sen. Steve Fischmann defeated his republican opponent, Ben Hall, with 54.43% of the vote. Democrat Theresa Becenti-Aguilar was unopposed. Only one Republican, Jefferson Byrd, defeated the Democratic candidate, leaving the PRC with the same 4-1 democratic majority as it previously had. Still, given Fischmann’s campaign promises, the PRC will likely be more progressive in the future.
New Mexico Constitutional Amendments:
Constitutional Amendment 1, to revise court of appeals jurisdiction. Passed: 58.16% for, 41.84% against.
Constitutional Amendment 2, to create ethics commission: Passed: 75.18% for, 24.82% against.
Little V. West, Esq., Of Counsel
Holland & Hart New Mexico Governmental Affairs
Prepared Friday, November 30, 2018