New Mexico Republican Party leaders on Saturday picked state Sen. Mark Moores, of Albuquerque, as their party’s candidate for the June 1 special election for the U.S. House seat vacated by former Rep. Deb Haaland (D-NM), who was confirmed this month as President Joe Biden’s secretary of the interior.
Moores, who won reelection in 2020 for his third term in the New Mexico Senate, received 40 percent, or 49 votes, of the 121 votes cast by members of the New Mexico GOP’s State Central Committee during a Zoom virtual meeting. Moores was one of seven candidates whom committee members considered during the meeting.
New Mexico Democrat Party leaders will vote on Tuesday for their candidate.
During the committee meeting, Moores “positioned himself as a seasoned campaigner and fundraiser, with a conservative voting record at the Statehouse in Santa Fe on issues of gun rights and natural resources,” according to the Associated Press, which added that he said to committee members, “I have a proven track record of voting for our values.”
New Mexico GOP chair Steve Pearce told Breitbart News last Saturday the party is “all in” on achieving a Republican victory in June and views the vacant seat — in the state’s First Congressional District — as a “pickup opportunity” despite Democrats having occupied it for more than a decade.
“The overreach of the Biden administration, the chaos that they’ve got going on at the border, the damage they’re doing to the New Mexico economy, to taking away our budget for teacher pay, all of those things are beginning to soak into the public, and they’re saying, ‘Wait there is a difference between Democrat, Republican,’” Pearce said on SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Saturday. “People are asking significant questions between Biden and Michelle Lujan Grisham, our governor, that just believe this is a pickup opportunity for the Republicans. Nationwide, it would set the Democrats’ House upside-down when we win this race, and so we’re all in for it.”
Pearce expressed his support for Moores after his win in a statement Saturday, saying the party intends to make a “strong case” for Moores’s election in June.
“Congratulations to Sen. Mark Moores on his victory today! New Mexico Republicans are ready to work hard to win this race and restore New Mexico values to this congressional seat,” Pearce said. “New Mexico Republicans are united behind our nominee and we look forward to making the strong case for electing Mark Moores to the voters of the First Congressional District.”
Absentee voting for the June 1 election begins in just over a month, on May 4.
Write to Ashley Oliver at [email protected].