Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Dunn runs for Senate as Libertarian in NM

Libertarian Aubrey Dunn joins Senate race | Legislature | New Mexico Legislative Session | - Steve Terell, Santa Fe New Mexican:

February 6, 2018 - "State Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn Jr., who recently changed his voting registration from Republican to Libertarian, filed to run for U.S. Senate on Tuesday against incumbent Democrat Martin Heinrich and Republican building contractor Mick Rich.

"Dunn, who won the land commissioner race four years ago, is one of an entire slate of Libertarians who filed for congressional and state offices on Tuesday. Dunn’s son, A. Blair Dunn, is running for attorney general, while other Libertarians are running for secretary of state, land commissioner and two of New Mexico’s three seats in the U.S. House of Representatives.

"The Secretary of State’s Office last week designated the Libertarian Party as a major party in New Mexico. The party won that [status] after former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson’s relatively strong showing in the 2016 presidential election in this state. Johnson, who was a Republican when he was governor between 1995 and 2002, got about 9.3 percent of the vote in the state, which is the best a third party has done here since independent presidential candidate Ross Perot won 16 percent of the state’s vote in 1992.

"Although Libertarians appeal to some on the left because of the party’s liberal views on social issues such as marijuana, abortion rights and gay rights, they tend to hurt Republicans because of their strong views on easing regulations, lowering taxes and shrinking government. The emergence of an active Libertarian Party in the state raises the question of whether GOP candidates will suffer.

"'I think I’ll pull equally from both my opponents,' Dunn said Tuesday. "Progressives in this state have made strides in taking over the Democratic Party, leaving many conservative Democrats behind'.... 'This is a winnable race for Libertarians,' he said, pointing to a recent poll that showed Heinrich with an approval rate of less than 50 percent....

"Besides Dunn, the best-known Libertarian candidate to file Tuesday was former state Rep. Sandra Jeff, who is running for secretary of state.... Jeff is a former Democrat from Crownpoint. She often sided with Republicans during her three terms in the state House....

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