New Mexico: Sportsmen Like Teague, but NRA Backs Tinsley

Posted October 6, 2008 at 6:19pm

Former Lea County Commissioner and wealthy businessman Harry Teague (D), hoping to capitalize on a favorable political environment for Democrats in his bid for the Republican-leaning 2nd district, has been endorsed by the American Hunters and Shooters Association.

Countering that announcement, wealthy businessman Ed Tinsley (R), facing a tougher battle than expected for the seat being vacated by Rep. Steve Pearce (R), revealed Monday that he had received the backing of the National Rifle Association.

The AHSA serves as a counterweight to the NRA.

Tinsley has been hammering Teague for his position on guns. Teague describes himself as a strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment, but Tinsley, most recently in a television ad, argues otherwise.

“We are proud to endorse Harry Teague,” AHSA President Ray Schoenke said in a statement provided by the Teague campaign. “As a gun owner and avid hunter, he knows that you need both a gun and a place to hunt, so he will protect our 2nd Amendment rights.”

Schoenke is a former Washington Redskins football player who in 1972 organized a group of professional athletes who supported former Sen. George McGovern (D-S.D.) for president.

Mother in White’s Ad: Heinrich Is ‘Despicable’

Bernalillo County Sheriff Darren White (R), hoping to come from behind and win the open 1st district seat, is up with a new television ad.

Zinging his opponent, former Albuquerque City Councilor Martin Heinrich (D), White’s ad features the parents of a Bernalillo County sheriff’s deputy who was killed in the line of duty. In the 30-second spot, the parents of the slain deputy, James McGrane Jr., call Heinrich “despicable.”

The ad is running on broadcast television in the Albuquerque media market. It was launched in response to a television ad run by the Heinrich campaign that cites a newspaper article: “The wives of police officers said White endangered their husbands’ lives.”

Heinrich has been leading White in most recent polls.

In the ad, James McGrane, the deputy’s father, says: “I heard the pounding at the door and I looked through the blinds and I saw Darren and three deputies. And I knew, I knew, exactly what happened. … Our son died doing his job.”

Rita McGrane, the deputy’s mother, says, “Jimmy would have laid down his life for anyone, and that’s how Darren White is.”

Father: “I know Darren White, he loves his officers. His officers love him.”

Mother: “Martin Heinrich is despicable.”

Father: “Martin Heinrich, you should be very ashamed of yourself. You don’t have a clue what these officers have to do.”

Democrats argue that White’s latest ad is a weak attempt to distract voters from his ties to President Bush.

“Eighty nine percent of New Mexico police voted no confidence in White, Bush’s favorite sheriff, and 21 wives of police officers wrote that White endangered their husbands’ lives,” Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee spokesman Yoni Cohen said. “If New Mexico’s police don’t trust White, why should New Mexico’s families?”