Primary Candidate Field Starts to Organize | The Line


>>Gene: WE ARE BACK ONCE MORE
WITH THE LINE OPINION PANEL. BOTH REPUBLICAN AND DEMOCRATIC
PARTIES HELD THEIR PREPRIMARY CONVENTIONS THIS PAST WEEKEND. THE RACE IS ON FOR AN OPEN
SENATE SEAT. THE THREE CONGRESSIONAL SEATS
ARE ALSO ON THE BALLOT, ONE VACATED UP FOR GRABS AND TWO
DEFENDED BY INCUMBENTS. ON THE U.S. SENATE SIDE,
REPUBLICANS PICKED PRO LIFE ACTIVIST ELISA MARTINEZ OVER
MARK RONCHETTI. WAS THAT SURPRISING TO YOU,
FOR MR. RONCHETTI OR FOR HER,
WHEN THEY FINISHED UP.>>Andy: NOT PARTICULARLY. I HAVE BEEN HAVING
CONVERSATIONS WITH PEOPLE OF PLACING UNOFFICIAL BETS ON WHO
WAS GOING TO MAKE IT. MARK HAS A HIGH PROFILE. EVERYONE THAT WATCHES KRQE
REMEMBERS HIM AS WEATHERMAN. ELISA MARTINEZ DEFINITELY SORT
OF HIT A MARKET OF VOTERS THAT IS PRO LIFE. SHE IS HISPANIC, FEMALE, SORT
OF DIFFERENT THAN PREVIOUS CANDIDATES. ONE THING I NOTICED THAT SEEMS
OUT OF THE NORM WAS THAT MIC RICH DROPPED OUT ALMOST
IMMEDIATELY AND GENERALLY SPEAKING, IN MY EXPERIENCE,
EVEN IF PEOPLE DON’T HIT THE THRESHOLD, THEY GET
AUTOMATICALLY ON THE BALLOT, THEY DON’T GO AWAY. THEY MAY EVEN HAVE SIGNATURES
READY TO GO TO STAY ON. BUT HE GOT OUT. THIS IS THE SECOND TIME.>>WERE YOU SURPRISED BY THE
RONCHETTI FINISH?>>Merritt: NO, BUT I THINK
OVERALL I THINK WOMEN WERE UNDERESTIMATED GOING INTO THIS
BECAUSE YOU HAVE, OUT OF FOUR RACES, WHICH WOULD BE EIGHT —
TWO TOP FINISHERS ARE FEMALES AND ONLY TWO MALES. AND A LOT OF PEOPLE IN THE
REPUBLICAN PARTY DISCOUNTED THE IMPACT MARTINEZ HAD BY
BEING A WOMAN. WOMEN ARE UNDERREPRESENTED IN
NEW MEXICO GOP FOR SOMETIME. IT HAS GOTTEN WORSE IN RECENT
YEARS AND I THINK IT IS ABSOLUTELY — REPRESENTATIVE
KELLY FARJARDO FOUNDATION IS DOING A LOT AND IF YOU LOOK
DOWN BALLOT, WE HAVE MORE WOMEN RUNNING.>>YVETTE HERRELL, CLAIRE
CHASE, WHAT IS YOUR SENSE OF THAT. WERE YOU SURPRISED BY WHERE
HERRELL FINISHED?>>Merritt: I WAS, BECAUSE SHE
HAS A GREAT BACKGROUND. SHE HAS A GREAT BACKGROUND AS
A LEGISLATOR, AS ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT, SO
SHE REALLY KNOWS THIS VERY WELL. SHE IS VERY WELL RESPECTED BUT
IT SEEMS LIKE ALL THE MONEY AND MOMENTUM WAS GOING TO
CLAIRE CHASE SO THAT WAS, FOR ME, A PLEASANT SURPRISE.>>Gene: CONTINUING ON, NAME
ID CARRIES SOMETHING WHEN TALKING CONGRESSIONAL SEATS.>>Sophie: CERTAINLY. I THINK WE DON’T ANTICIPATE
GENERALLY SEEING SOMEBODY COME OUT OF LITERALLY NOWHERE,
ESPECIALLY IN THE CONVENTION, YOU EXPECT THE PEOPLE WHO
SUCCEED ARE THE ONES THAT HAVE A HISTORY IN THE PARTY,
SUPPORT OF THE PARTY, ETC. THE FACT THIS IS NOT YVETTE’S
FIRST RODEO CERTAINLY, I MEAN, POINTED TO HER FINISH THERE.>>Gene: CD3. TERESA FERNANDEZ, SHE RAN AWAY
WITH IT.>>Sophie: SHE DID. SHE SEEMED SURPRISED BY THAT,
WHICH WAS INTERESTING BUT CERTAINLY AMONG ACTIVISTS HER
NAME WAS AT THE TOP OF THEIR LIST, THAT IS DEFINITELY WHAT
I HEARD. I AM INTERESTED IN THE NUMBER
OF PEOPLE EVEN FROM OTHER STATES WHO HAVE SAID TO ME
THEY WERE SURPRISED BY VALERIE PLAME’S OUTCOMES AND I THINK
THERE WAS A SENSE AMONG A CERTAIN PORTION OF PERHAPS THE
LESS DIRECTLY INVOLVED ELECTORATE WHO THOUGHT SHE
MIGHT HAVE A LOCK ON THAT AND IT TURNS OUT SHE DOESN’T.
I THINK THE HANDWRITING WAS ON THE WALL FOR A WHILE ON THAT
BUT TO THE POINT FROM EARLIER, SHE IS READY WITH SIGNATURES
AND MY SENSE IS SHE IS COMMUNICATING THAT, SHE
CERTAINLY PLANS TO TRY TO MOVE FORWARD FROM THAT DEFEAT
REALLY.>>Gene: CD3, VALERIE PLAME
THING, AS SOPHIE MENTIONED, IF NOISE AND ACTIVITY WAS THE ALL
THING, SHE WOULD HAVE RUN AWAY WITH IT BUT BARELY 5% WAS
SHOCKING. SHE STAYS IN FOR SIGNATURES
BUT YOUR SENSE OF THAT AND WHAT WAS SPOKEN HERE?>>Dan: SHE HAS A LOT OF
MONEY. SO, I MEAN, SHE IS COLLECTING
A LOT OF DONATIONS AND FUND RAISING IS AN IMPORTANT PART
OF SERVING IN CONGRESS, THE ABILITY TO RAISE MONEY. SO, MY SENSE IS THAT SHE IS
GOING TO BE AROUND FOR A WHILE. THERE HAS BEEN A LOT OF
NATIONAL ATTENTION THAT TERESA FERNANDEZ PICKED UP. I THINK PEOPLE SORT OF
DEMOCRATIC ACTIVISTS ARE PROBABLY TUNED INTO HER
CANDIDACY AND NOW THAT SHE HAS A STRONG SHOWING AT
CONVENTION, THAT MAY BOON HER FURTHER. IT IS A REALLY A CROWDED FIELD
SO IT IS HARD TO KNOW WHO WINS WHEN YOU HAVE THIS MANY
CANDIDATES. IT WILL NOT TAKE 50% OF THE
VOTE TO WIN. IT WILL BE SOMEONE WHO CAN
HOLD ON TO A SIGNIFICANT CHUNK OF THE ELECTORATE.>>Gene: KEY POINT. WITH A CROWDED FIELD, WE HAVE
NOT SEEN THAT IN THIS DISTRICT FOR A LONG TIME. IT HAS BEEN INTERESTING. TAKE A CUT AT CD3, ANY
SURPRISE FOR YOU?>>Andy: I AM NOT THAT
SURPRISED THAT VALERIE PLAME DIDN’T HIT THAT THRESHOLD. I THINK THAT DISTRICT — ALL
DISTRICTS IN NEW MEXICO LIKE THIS, BUT PARTICULARLY THAT
ONE, IS SORT OF TERRITORIAL. I THINK FROM THE GET-GO
CONSTITUENTS THERE ARE KIND OF THINKING, WHO IS THIS PERSON? THEY KNOW WHO SHE IS BUT
ASKING QUESTIONS, WHY IS SHE COMING IN AND DOING THIS? BUT I WAS SURPRISED BY JOHN
BLAIR THAT HE DIDN’T PICK UP MORE VOTES. HE IS PRETTY WELL-KNOWN IN
THAT CIRCLE. HE HAS EXPERIENCE WORKING FOR
SENATOR HEINRICH, CHIEF OF STAFF, HE WORKED FOR SECRETARY
OF STATE MAGGIE TOULOUSE OLIVER, HE IS FROM SANTA FE,
BEEN OUT THERE GETTING A NAME. I WAS SURPRISED HE DIDN’T GET
A HIGHER NUMBER OF VOTES.>>Gene: GOOD POINT. GOT A GOOD ONE FOR YOU. THIS IS INTERESTING TO ME IN
THE REPUBLICAN DIVIDE, THE MARTINEZ, MCCLUSKEY, STEVE
PEARCE WING, WHAT IS GOING ON THERE? ANY CLARITY SINCE THE
PREPRIMARY CONVENTION ON ANY OF THAT?>>Merritt: NO. I WAS SAYING BEFORE TAPING, I
TRY TO MAINTAIN AN EXCEL SPREAD SHEET ON WHO HATES WHO
THIS WEEK IN THE NEW MEXICO GOP AND IT IS REALLY HARD TO
SEE. I MEAN, AGAIN, THE ONE
UNIFYING — TWO UNIFYING FACTORS I SAW THAT I FOUND
INTERESTING. ONE, VERY WOMEN FOCUSED. THE OTHER, TRUMP IS GOING INTO
ALL THE DOWN BALLOT RACES, AND EVEN THOUGH THERE WAS NO OTHER
CANDIDATE AT THE PREPRIMARY CONVENTION, IT WAS ALL TRUMP. AND SO, THAT IS — I FIND THAT
INTERESTING, HOW MUCH THAT PERSONALITY CULT IS TAKING
OVER DOWN BALLOT RACES.>>Gene: HOW MUCH IS IN THE
MCCLUSKEY LEFT OVER HEARTBURN? IS THAT A PROBLEM FOR
MR. RONCHETTI OR IS THAT JUST
INSIDE BASEBALL, IT DOESN’T MEAN ANYTHING TO THE VOTER?>>Merritt: I THINK IT IS A
PROBLEM AND IF ELISA MARTINEZ CAN HARNESS THAT, SHE CAN
PROBABLY REALLY BENEFIT. I DON’T KNOW HOW HER FUND
RAISING IS, I DIDN’T LOOK. MCCLUSKEY IS VERY GOOD AT FUND
RAISING FROM MANY SOURCES, WITHOUT A LOT OF TRAIL. SO, THERE WILL BE MONEY
FLOWING IN FOR SURE.>>Gene: DEADLINE COMING UP
END OF THIS MONTH. INTERESTING POINT THERE. DIDN’T WANT TO SHUT YOU OUT OF
CD2. DID YOU HAVE A THOUGHT ON
HERRELL AND CLAIRE CHASE DOWN THERE?>>Sophie: I DON’T.
I MEAN IT IS INTERESTING, I THINK, TO THE POINT ABOUT THE
WOMEN, IT HADN’T OCCURRED TO ME BUT THIS IS GOING TO BE A
FEMALE RACE AGAIN, AND IT IS NOT NECESSARILY SOMETHING THAT
I EXPECT FROM THAT PARTICULAR DISTRICT BUT THAT IS HOW IT
ENDED UP WORKING OUT. AND I WILL SAY AS A FEMINIST,
AND DEMOCRAT, I THINK THAT IS FANTASTIC. WE HAVE HAD PLENTY OF ALL-MALE
RACES OVER THE YEARS AND I THINK IT IS WRONGS OF
FEMINISTS TO THINK, TO BELIEVE, THAT IT WILL ONLY
EVER BE DEMOCRATS WHO RUN FEMALE CANDIDATES. WE HAVE SEEN OVER A DECADE NOW
IN NEW MEXICO, THESE STRONG FEMALE CANDIDATES FROM THE
REPUBLICAN SIDE HERE IN NEW MEXICO.>>Dan: WE COULD END UP WITH
THREE WOMEN SERVING IN THE U.S. HOUSE, DEPENDING HOW THE
RACES TURN OUT.>>Gene: HOW MUCH STOCK SHOULD
WE PUT IN PREPRIMARIES AT THE END OF THE DAY? GARY KING, 2014, FINISHED DEAD
LAST AND WON THE PRIMARY. SHOULD WE GET TOO HUNG UP ON
WHO DID WELL ON PREPRIMARY STUFF HISTORICALLY?>>Dan: WELL, AS YOU
MENTIONED, GARY KING IS REALLY THE ONLY EXAMPLE OF SOMEONE
WHO FAIRED POORLY IN THE CONVENTION BUT ENDED UP
WINNING THE NOMINATION. SO, YEAH, I THINK YOU MIGHT
LOOK AT IT AS JUST SORT OF ONE OF MANY DIFFERENT SIGNS, YOU
KNOW, FUND RAISING, CONVENTION SUPPORT, IT IS AN INDICATOR
BUT NOT THE ONLY THING. BUT CERTAINLY CAN GIVE PEOPLE
SOME MOMENTUM HEADING INTO CAMPAIGN SEASON.>>Gene: THANKS FOR EVERYONE
HERE BONING UP ON THE TOPICS AND BRAVE ENOUGH TO OFFER
THEIR THOUGHTS. APPRECIATE IT. BACK IN A MOMENT WITH FINAL
THOUGHTS.

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