Democrats tout voter-registration advantage

Posted 7/08/2008 04:03:00 PM

More New Mexicans registered to vote as Democrats than as Republicans and independents combined in the first six months of the year, a statistic that has the state’s Democratic Party smiling.

“With more and more Democrats registering to vote, we are confident that this year New Mexico will turn blue,” Brian Colón, chairman of the Democratic Party of New Mexico, said in a news release. “Democrats are on the right side of the issues and represent the values of New Mexicans. Not only are we registering more and more voters, but record interest in volunteering has energized all the Democratic campaigns here in the state.”

From Jan. 1 to June 30, 27,207 New Mexicans registered as Democrats, while 12,926 registered as Republicans and 11,805 registered independent of any political party, according to the news release. Several hundred more registered as members of other political parties.

The Democrats’ advantage in voter registration, according to the news release, is attributable to “the impact of an Obama candidacy, the Udall for Senate campaign’s work to mobilize Democrats early on and the excitement around the Teague, Heinrich and Luján campaigns,” which has energized people of all political affiliations “looking to this election as an opportunity to bring change to Washington.”

“With the Obama campaign continuing to register voters across New Mexico and competitive Congressional races reaching out to these new voters, we hope to leave an important mark on New Mexico’s political landscape for elections to come,” the party’s news release stated.

In the 2nd Congressional District in southern New Mexico, 7,783 people registered as Democrats, according to the Democratic Party, while 4,991 registered as Republicans and 4,435 registered as independents.

In Doña Ana County, independents topped Republicans in new voter registrations from January to June. While 3,141 registered as Democrats, 2,220 registered as independents and 1,346 registered as Republicans. It was the only county in the 2nd District where there was a significantly larger number of new independents than new Republicans.

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