What New Mexicans Need To Know

July 20, 2018 — Steve Pearce will be a continuation of the failed policies that have held New Mexico back. Instead of looking out for people, he has always put corporate interests ahead of New Mexico’s families. Named one of the most corrupt members of Congress, he received over two million dollars in oil and gas companies while voting against investing in renewable energy and opening up drilling in National Monuments. He voted repeatedly to roll back healthcare coverage for people with pre-existing medical conditions and to take away health insurance from three hundred thousand New Mexicans who receive medical care through Medicaid. He supported the Republican tax plan that gives 83 percent of the benefits to the wealthiest Americans while blowing up the deficit and jeopardizing New Mexicans’ retirement security.

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DPNM Chair Demands Herrell Return Jim Jordan Cash

On May 25, controversial Republican nominee for Congress in New Mexico’s 2nd District, Yvette Herrell, accepted the endorsement of Congressman Jim Jordan of Ohio, founding member of the far-right House Freedom Caucus, the faction of Republicans who have engineered recent government shutdowns, putting our national security and local law enforcement at risk. On July 3, NBC News reported that Jim Jordan has been credibly accused of covering up widespread sexual abuse at Ohio State University while serving as the assistant wrestling coach.

Yvette Herrell accepted a $2,000 donation from Jordan’s campaign AND Jordan personally helped her rake in almost a third of her contributions this quarter, $33,900, funnelled through Jordan’s leadership PAC, while he faces calls to resign from both sides of the aisle for covering up sexual abuse. In light of this revelation, Yvette Herrell has a choice: Return this money or keep the big check and be beholden to Congressman Jordan, who covered up sexual abuse at Ohio State.

“Jim Jordan stood by while students at Ohio State were sexually exploited and abused; there is no other option than to return this tainted money, and reject support from someone that covered up sexual abuse.” said Marg Elliston, Chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico.

Contact: Joel Kasnetz
(505) 750-0140

Wayne Johnson Illegally Dips Into Auditor Campaign Cash To Pay Wife For Extravagant Mayoral Campaign Party; Law Enforcement Referral Made for Wannabe AG Michael Hendricks’ Illegal Conduct

Contact: Joel Kasnetz
(505) 750-0140

New Mexicans have had it with the Republican crime spree. Yesterday, the Democratic Party of New Mexico filed an official campaign finance complaint against the campaign of Wayne Johnson, Republican candidate for State Auditor. According to campaign finance reports, Johnson paid his own wife $1,640.23 out of funds solicited for his state auditor campaign to illegally cover his extravagant election night party for his failed Albuquerque Mayoral campaign. According to this report, the expense was incurred on 10/3/2017, before Johnson announced his candidacy for State Auditor. This is illegal, according to the New Mexico Campaign Practices Act.

That’s only one lowlight from the continued New Mexico Republican crime spree. Just last week, it was revealed that Republican Attorney General candidate Michael Hendricks concealed campaign donors and an illegal campaign loan.

And this isn’t even Wayne Johnson’s first infraction. He faces a sanction and fine from the Bernalillo County Code of Conduct Review Boardfor illegal campaign contributions.

But wait, there’s more: NM Attorney General Hector Balderas has brought multiple corruption charges against Governor Martinez’s former top cabinet secretary Demesia Padilla. The Attorney General is also pursuing Rep. Monica Youngblood’s aggravated DWI and credible accusations that she tried to use her position to try and wriggle out of the charges. In addition, Secretary of State candidate drop-out JoHanna Cox is still facing malpractice lawsuits(including one from a strip club she represented) and filed exceptionally sloppy campaign finance reports. And we can’t forget Pat Lyonssuspicious land deals.

This is, unfortunately, just 2018 in Susana Martinez’s New Mexico.

“The New Mexico Republican crime spree is out of control,” said Marg Elliston, Chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico. “Susana Martinez has let her cronies wreak havoc on New Mexico and Wayne Johnson’s disregard for the law is just one symptom of the swampy way she’s run New Mexico for 8 years. One thing’s for sure, Wayne Johnson and many of his fellow Republicans need to leave the campaign trail to resolve their lawsuits, ethics charges, and DWIs.”

See the complaint as submitted:

GOP’s Arnold-Jones Stuns Audience With Conspiracy Tirade at Forum

Janice Arnold-Jones, Republican nominee for Congress in New Mexico’s 1st District, elicited audible gasps* for her fringe positions at Tuesday’s candidate forum hosted by the Bar Association of New Mexico.

“Ms. Arnold-Jones might be right at home in today’s far-right Republican Party, but her out of touch worldview would do nothing but pull us back,” said Marg Elliston, Chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico. “She repeated her strong support for Trump nominating a far-right Supreme Court nominee who would repeal Roe and marriage equality, backed Trump’s disastrous tax policy, and said she’d defund Albuquerque over its status as a safe place for refugees. Janice Arnold-Jones doesn’t represent New Mexican values and she’s not fit to represent New Mexicans in Congress.”

Arnold-Jones said, “I am pleased with [Trump’s] tax policy”…

…But Americans haven’t seen any benefits…

CNN: “Roughly 4 in 10 (37%) say the tax bill will make their family worse off than they are right now. Only 1 in 5 (21%) say it will improve their family’s current status.”

…And even Republicans are running scared from it.

Vox: “Marco Rubio says there’s ‘no evidence whatsoever’ Republican tax cuts are helping workers”

She suggested she’d support Trump’s nominee for Supreme Court…

…Who Trump has said he’d choose to overturn Roe v. Wade…

San Francisco Chronicle: “In his final presidential debate with Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump said the Supreme Court would ‘automatically’ overturn Roe vs. Wade once he became president, ‘because I am putting pro-life justices on the court.’”

…and marriage equality.

Politifact: “Looking for a concise answer, Wallace asked Trump if he would ‘try to appoint justices to overrule the decision on same-sex marriage.’ ‘I could strongly consider that, yes,’ Trump said.”

She also repeated Trump’s anti-immigrant propaganda about Albuquerque’s policy towards undocumented immigrants…

Donald Trump: “There is a Revolution going on in California. Soooo many Sanctuary areas want OUT of this ridiculous, crime infested & breeding concept. Jerry Brown is trying to back out of the National Guard at the Border, but the people of the State are not happy. Want Security & Safety NOW!”

Janice Arnold-Jones: “I do support restricting those funds […] It’s literally a get out of jail free card for people who have been arrested for crimes. It’s not a matter of protecting your community. Rather, when you set up sanctuary cities, the very communities that we talk about protecting are the ones that are being victimized. And if it takes withholding federal funds to get that point across, that is a sad reality.” [Bar Association of New Mexico Forum, 7/10/18]

…Which has been thoroughly debunked.

Washington Post: “Sanctuary cities don’t ‘breed crime.’ They encourage people to report crime.”

Newsweek: “Trump Says Sanctuary Cities Are ‘crime Infested’—research Suggests He’s Wrong”


*Janice Arnold-Jones: “In this last election, we could have elected a woman who, in my estimation, should be in prison. [Audience gasps]”  [Bar Association of New Mexico Forum, 7/10/18]

Wannabe AG Hendricks Breaks The Law. Again.

Albuquerque, NM – This morning, DPNM Chairwoman Marg Elliston issued the following statement regarding the outrageous campaign violations and the illegal, backdated, and potentially fraudulent concealment of a $50,000 contribution by and from the NM GOP’s wannabe AG candidate, Michael Hendricks.

“Michael Hendricks continues to violate campaign finance rules and laws, this time blatantly concealing a $50,000 illegal campaign contribution from his own immigration law firm for over six months,” said Marg Elliston, Chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico. “The chief law enforcement officer of the State of New Mexico enforces the law, so it’s shameful that Michael Hendricks can’t even follow the simplest of New Mexico laws. If he can’t get his own finance records right, how can he enforce our state’s laws? There needs to be an investigation into this potential fraud against New Mexicans.”

DPNM will be filing yet another complaint with the appropriate authorities today regarding the ’ latest legal violations by Michael Hendricks, his Salt Lake City, Utah-based campaign consultant, and treasurer for their disgraceful conduct.


Every campaign finance filing day is frankly humiliating for Michael Hendricks and his troubled campaign. This month, Hendricks reported an additional $50,000 contribution from his firm, Hendricks Law, which is in violation of the NM Campaign Practices Act.  This donation should have been listed as a loan, otherwise the maximum he could have received from Hendricks Law is $11,000. The report also contains likely duplicate contributions from Mr. James Hall of Los Alamos.

It is also concerning that Hendricks did not report a $50,000 loan he made to his campaign on 10/3/17 until yesterday.

Trump Chile Tax Threatens NM Jobs and Tradition

Trump’s ‘Trade War’ just hit New Mexicans where it hurts — our chile. 5,000New Mexico families rely on the chile industry and Canada has responded by putting a 10% retaliatory tariff on many American goods, including New Mexico chiles, salsas, and beer. Trump’s tariffs also directly increase the costs of lumber and sheet metal, while China’s tariff response has already hit New Mexico’s pecan farms. Trump’s big talk on trade has gotten us nothing but retaliatory tariffs from China and our allies, like Canada and the E.U..

“New Mexicans cherish green and red chile, but they’re not just our claim to fame. Trump’s Chile Tax will cost good paying jobs and endanger one of New Mexico’s precious traditions,” said Marg Elliston, Chair of Democratic Party of New Mexico. “Trump and Republicans have broken their promise to New Mexicans and, unfortunately, working families will bear the burden.”

WATCH: KRQE NEWS 13 on Trump Chile Tax

New Mexico Democrats are advocating for a strong, smart position on cross border trade, in contrast to the Trump’s levy tariffs first, think later strategy:

Albuquerque Journal, 3/9/18: “Sen. Tom Udall, D-N.M., said the tariffs might not have a major direct impact in New Mexico but they were not well-conceived.

‘Although these tariffs may have limited direct impact in New Mexico, the process — the uncertainty and rhetoric leading up to today — is a clear example of the dysfunction in the White House,’ Udall said.

‘While the tariffs President Trump plans do not appear to apply to Mexico and Canada for now, the threat is real. Border trade empowers New Mexico’s economy, and any change of our relationship with Mexico — because of tariffs or the renegotiation of NAFTA — must protect the thousands of working New Mexicans whose livelihoods depend on stable trade relations with Mexico.’

Sen. Martin Heinrich, ranking Democrat on the Joint Economic Committee, agreed.

‘Tariffs can be an appropriate punitive tool when people are cheating the system, however, I’m not sure the administration has thought this through,’ he said. ‘They seem to be taking a sledge hammer to a problem that needs a more surgical approach.’

Michelle Lujan Grisham, a Democrat running for governor of New Mexico, called the tariff hike ‘short-sighted’ and could result in economic pain for New Mexico farmers.

‘The President has an obligation to uphold fair trade policies, but threatening trade wars against our allies is dangerous, short-sighted, and will make it harder for U.S. businesses to compete abroad,’ she said. ‘Retaliatory actions would especially harm agricultural businesses in New Mexico and will only increase costs on consumers.’”

Demesia Padilla Self-Dealing Charges Round Out Typical Week in Susana Martinez’s New Mexico

A former cabinet member getting charged with multiple crimes is one heck of a big deal, but with so many GOP official and candidates getting into serious legal and ethics scandals, (Wayne Johnson’s campaign finance violation fines and sanctions, JoHanna Cox’s legal malpractice lawsuits and sloppy campaign finance reports, Pat Lyons’ suspicious land deals, Monica Youngblood’s aggravated DWI charges, and Michael Hendricks’ concealment of campaign donors), it feels like just another week in Susana Martinez’s New Mexico.

“This is what GOP leadership (or lack thereof) gets you,” said Marg Elliston, Chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico. “Susana Martinez has been out for a burger for the last 8 years and let her cronies run wild. Steve Pearce, who was twice named one of the ‘most corrupt members of Congress,’ and tried to defund the Office of Congressional Ethics for investigating his grift, would bring New Mexico Republican sleaze to a new level.”

June 2016: Pearce proposed to eliminate the entire budget for the House Office of Congressional Ethics after his office was investigated.

Las Cruces Sun-News, 9/26/16: “On June 10, 2016 Congressman Steve Pearce acknowledged an ethics investigation into staff in his office and proposed to eliminate the investigators who conducted it. The allegations were dismissed and would have remained confidential had Pearce not taken to the floor of the US House of Representatives (on live TV!) and proposed to eliminate the entire funding for the House Office of Congressional Ethics which investigates misconduct by members of Congress and their staff. Pearce’s proposed legislation was resoundingly defeated in a bi-partisan vote.”

2007 & 2008: Pearce was named one of the most corrupt members of Congress for failing to disclose his business interests.

In September 2007 and September 2008, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) named Pearce to their lists of the 22 and 20 most corrupt members of Congress. Both years, the watchdog group cited Pearce’s failure to report the sale of LEA Fishing Tools and the lobbying he did for drilling in Otero Mesa, which would benefit a major contributor.

2007: Pearce Failed to Report the Sale of Lea Fishing on His Personal Financial Disclosure Form.CREW noted: Rep. Pearce was the president of Lea Fishing Tools from which, in 2002, he drew a salary of $277,352 and held stock worth between $1 and $5 million. In the fall of 2003, Rep. Pearce sold the company’s assets to Key Energy, in exchange for 542,477 shares of common stock.   Rep. Pearce failed to report the transaction on his 2003 financial disclosure report. In that report, Rep. Pearce indicated only that he was the president of Trinity Industries, Inc. “F/K/A Lea Fishing Tools, Inc.” and that he held between $5 and $25 million of stock in the company. Given that all of Lea Fishing Tools’ assets were transferred to Key Energy, it appears that Trinity Industries may be a holding company for the Key Energy stock, but this is unclear. […] After selling Lea Fishing Tools’ assets to Key Energy, Rep. Pearce was required to report the sale on his financial disclosure form as a transaction. […] Rep. Pearce appears to have violated the Ethics in Government Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1001 and House rules by failing to list the sale of Lea Fishing Tools’ assets on his financial disclosure forms.  [CREW’s Most Corrupt, 9/23/07]

1997: Pearce failed to disclose that he served on the board of a construction company.

Albuquerque Journal, 6/01/97: Pearce failed to disclose on his 1997 personal financial disclosure form “that he serves on the board of a construction company. Pearce said he didn’t know whether he forgot to list the corporation or was told he didn’t have to list it since the company is currently not doing business.”

Deportation Airline Bankrolling Steve Pearce’s Campaign

New Mexico In-Depth just revealed that Republican gubernatorial nominee Steve Pearce has taken $31,500 from former Republican Party of New Mexico Chair Allen Weh, his wife Rebecca, and CSI Aviation, their business which has had “hundreds of millions of dollars in contracts with [ICE’s] office of Detention Compliance and Removal,” and currently has similar contracts with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that may include the transportation of undocumented children around the country.

“We already knew that Allen Weh was making big bucks farming the federal government.  Now we know that those profits are coming from deportations of kids and families and he’s funneling some of those profits directly into Steve Pearce’s campaign. Is this why Steve Pearce was silent for so long as Trump tore children out of the arms of their families at the border and why he wants to deport DREAMers?” said Marg Elliston, Chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico. “If he has any respect for New Mexicans, Steve Pearce will give back the money from Deportation Air immediately.”

Pearce wants to forcibly deport New Mexico’s DREAMers.

2013: Pearce voted to begin the deportation of 800,000 DREAMers and votedagainst protections for DREAMers serving in the military.

Unsurprisingly, he also opposes a pathway to citizenship for them.

Pearce does not support a pathway to citizenship for New Mexico’s 6,000 DREAMers.

He admits that makes him even more anti-immigrant than Donald Trump.

Pearce: “We’re also not going to give citizenship. So, it falls short of that. The president has said that he will go further than I would, he would go up to a pathway.” [Pearce at Western New Mexico University, 2/5/18]

When confronted by his DREAMer constituents, he runs away.


He can’t sympathize with DREAMers too much because there are “lots of people in the world with more tragic stories”…

Pearce said that “most or all” who want a path to citizenship “should return home and get in line,” and that while he sympathizes with DREAMers, there are “lots of people in the world with more tragic stories.”  [Farmington Daily Times, 7/16/13]

…But he can sympathize with Donald Trump for calling much of the rest of the world “shithole countries”

CNN: “Trump decries immigrants from ‘shithole countries’ coming to US”

Pearce, 1/12/18: “Now myself, I go and I talk to the Republican Congressmen and women from New York and I just say, ‘what’s, what’s going on here?’ And they say, ‘Oh, he’s one of those Queens guys. Like one of those Lea County Guys. You know, that’s just the way they are. They just talk like that. They just do stuff like that.’”

Yvette Herrell Statement on Family Separation Gives New Mexico Whiplash

Yvette Herrell has finally spoken up about the Trump Administration’s forced family separation policy and, well, it’s sounds like the words of a politician already versed in DC doublespeak.

In her statement, Herrell both approves of and opposes Trump’s policy. She says she supports the “zero tolerance” policy that’s ripping children out of their mothers’ arms but opposes family separation. Which is it?

Let’s make one thing clear: This Trump Administration policy is what has split thousands of children from their parents and guardians in just the last month. Congress is broken, but the choice to rip families apart at the border is Donald Trump’s and his alone. He could pick up the phone right now and stop this cruel madness today.

“Ms. Herrell – New Mexicans see through your doublespeak. You, Steve Pearce, and Susana Martinez can’t hide from your unequivocal support for Trump’s barbaric family separations and no mealy-mouthed, meaningless statements are going to make this moral abomination end,” said Marg Elliston, Chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico. “Right this moment, there are children within our borders, ripped from their guardians and packed into tent cities and old Walmarts, who will have to live with the scars of what you and Donald Trump have subjected them to. You need to condemn Trump’s actions, end this brutality, and reunite families immediately.”