Democratic candidates rally in Las Cruces before midterm elections: Story/Photo Gallery


Cassidy Kuester

Gubernatorial candidate Michelle Lujan Grisham

A group of state and local Democratic candidates joined together in downtown Las Cruces Saturday to rally support from voters in the last days before the midterm elections.

Candidates, including U.S Sen. Martin Heinrich, U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, Xochitl Torres Small and other candidates spoke to a packed crowd of supporters in the Southwest Environmental Center Saturday evening. The rally was part of a four day statewide tour with stops in towns including Las Cruces, Roswell, Taos and Gallup.

The candidates collectively said they wanted to thank their supporters for the work they have done throughout their campaigns and also to motivate them to continue working until the polls close at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

“From the very beginning, you stood and said ‘New Mexico is going to be an example for the rest of the country,’ and we’ve seen that,” Howie Morales, candidate for lieutenant governor, said. “Our federal government, especially our president, can learn a lesson from this ticket here in New Mexico, because we are the ‘United States of America’, not the Divided States of America’.”

Heinrich, candidate for re-election to the U.S. Senate, said he is proud of the whole democratic ticket in New Mexico, and the objective is to bring the state and the nation as a whole, together.

“This election, at the national level, is about a battle for the soul of our nation,” Heinrich said. “I’ve come to the conclusion that leaders, we fight it out, but it’s about bringing people together. It’s bigger than someone who divides a community for political gain.”

Lujan Grisham, a candidate for New Mexico governor, said this midterm election will place people in seats who care about New Mexicans and who will stand up for what is right. She said Dona Ana County has been doing a lot of work to support the candidates who will do this.

“This county is making all the other counties sort of get their feelings hurt,” Lujan Grisham said. “It gets every single leader in a place to deliver the differences that you’ve been fighting for.”

Rose and James Mitchell, attendees of the rally, said they liked that the candidates presented answers to issues facing New Mexicans. James said he was tired of the divisiveness he has been seeing in the community and liked that the candidates spoke of bringing people together.

“I think they presented a united front and I’m excited about what’s going to happen in this state for the next four years. I’m really excited about the country,” Rose said. “I hope it does show a change on Tuesday. That’s what we’re looking for.”

Alexa and Joely Baca, students at NMSU, also attended the rally. They said they felt a lot of passion being demonstrated by the candidates. Alexa said it was important to her, as a younger voter, that the candidates seemed ready to make changes.

“I took away that I think we’re all really passionate to change who’s in office and who’s representing us right now,” Alexa said.

She said she is especially excited about Torres Small, a candidate for New Mexico’s Second Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives, and how she seems to be making a large impact on people.

Joely said she thinks New Mexico plays a large part in elections and thinks if more democratic candidates are elected, a bigger impact can be made.

Five candidates for judicial seats were recognized at the rally and Joanne Ferrary and Nathan Small were among the candidates for state representatives who were recognized as well. Other politicians in attendance included State Sen. Mary Kay Papen, Las Cruces Public Schools School Board Member Maria Flores and Associated Students of NMSU President Emerson Morrow.

Election Day is Nov. 6 and polling places, including NMSU’s Corbett Center Student Union, will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

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