New Mexico: Two Democrats Retreat, Aiding Luján’s Prospects

Posted December 5, 2007 at 6:34pm

Two prominent Democrats have announced that they will not seek the 3rd district seat being vacated by Rep. Tom Udall (D), who is running for Senate, the Santa Fe New Mexican reported Wednesday.

Former Santa Fe County Commissioner Javier Gonzales (D) and Española Mayor Joseph Maestas (D) have pulled their name from the crop of potential candidates for Udall’s solidly Democratic northern New Mexico seat.

Their decisions would appear to boost the likely candidacy of Ben Ray Luján (D) — a member of the state Public Regulation Commission and son of state Speaker Ben Luján (D).

Announced candidates for the 3rd district include Santa Fe County Commissioner Harry Montoya and Santa Fe developer Don Wiviott, though others may follow. Wiviott abandoned his quest for the Senate seat being vacated by retiring Sen. Pete Domenici (R) as soon as it became clear that Udall was going to run for Senate.

— David M. Drucker