Gov. Martinez is a lame duck and her approval ratings are below 50% and stuck there. That’s not good news for her future political prospects but it does mean candidates who want to take over have a ready narrative: I can fix what she couldn’t.
New Mexico’s lone Republican Congressman thinks that – coupled with Trump’s victory – might give him the statewide edge he didn’t have when he ran for US Senate against now-Senator Tom Udall.
Here’s the math that Pearce is likely considering
Pearce easily won reelection this year with 142,773 votes (62%) of support from his Southern New Mexico Congressional District. If he can consolidate that support and expand it to include the 94,874 Trump voters in heavily-populated Bernalillo County, Pearce could lock up 80% of Governor Martinez’s 293,000 statewide re-election votes in 2014.
That math likely has Pearce looking positively towards a run for governor in 2018. He has been widely rumored to be weighing a run as the Albuquerque Journal reported today.
Other contenders include Susana Martinez’s Lt. Gov. John Sanchez on the Republican side and Democrats Tom Udall (US Senator) and Michelle Lujan Grisham (Congress). A few other candidates are also discussed on the Democratic side, including Santa Fe businessman Alan Webber and former Univision executive Jeff Apodaca.
Just in case you don’t already know New Mexico’s craziest Congressman, here’s just a few quick primers on Steve Pearce: