KUNM

2019 election

Hannah Colton / KUNM


    

New Mexico politicians paid lip service this election cycle to a landmark education ruling about inequities in public schools. But no one was drawing a line between the Yazzie-Martinez case and an issue that’s had students walking out of classes this fall – climate change. Verland Coker, a 26-year-old Albuquerque school board candidate, makes that connection, calling out the hypocrisy of an education system here that relies on oil and gas money.

Hannah Colton / KUNM

When unknown political newcomers go up against a sitting city councilor with good name recognition, the politician who people know will usually win. Four Albuquerque City Council seats were on the ballot Tuesday, Nov. 5, and there was a big field of challengers for their seats. In two cases, the people in power did keep their positions, but longtime Councilor Isaac Benton is facing a runoff.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Public financing—where candidates can use public money to run their campaigns instead of bowing to high-dollar donors—has existed in New Mexico for years. But these days, even smaller races cost more than what’s allotted to candidates. One possible solution was Democracy Dollars, coupons distributed to eligible voters, who could donate them to the publicly financed candidates of their choice. The proposal failed by a small percentage when the votes were tallied Tuesday night.

Hannah Colton / KUNM

Three school board seats in New Mexico’s largest district were up for grabs in this week’s election, as leaders across the state are still grappling with educational inequities surfaced by a lawsuit last year. Ballots were counted Tuesday night, and voters in Albuquerque re-elected all three sitting school board members. 

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Voter turnout was high around the state on Tuesday, Nov. 5, as people cast ballots for their local leaders. In Albuquerque, even though there were contested City Council races, some folks said they mostly went to the polls to weigh in on bonds and taxes for public education. 

Hannah Colton / KUNM

People in far Northeast Albuquerque were set to elect a new city councilor for the first time in 20 years on Tuesday, Nov. 5. Councilor Brad Winter is giving up his seat in District 4, and three candidates campaigned for his spot. But none of them cornered over 50 percent of the vote, which is what it takes to win. So Brook Bassan and Ane Romero are heading for a runoff. KUNM spoke to voters in District 4 on Election Day.

HANNAH COLTON / KUNM

Voters in Albuquerque will choose three new school board members on Tuesday, Nov. 5. Those officials will shape the district’s budget and policies, and they’ll hire a new superintendent—all at a time when a landmark education ruling points to huge disparities in the quality of public schooling kids get across the state. KUNM’s Marisa Demarco spoke with education reporter Hannah Colton about what’s at stake with the school board race.

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Tuesday, Nov. 5, is Election Day, and all over the state, people will be choosing their local leaders and making decisions about where bond money should go. The polls are open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The state tried out two new things this cycle as officials look to make voting more convenient.

Tom Arthur / Wikimedia Commons

Early voting has begun in Albuquerque, and for the first time, voters can register and vote all within the same day. This could help historically underrepresented groups access the polls more easily.

Some voters may not know they are eligible to vote, like New Mexico’s homeless population. 

 

Bernalillo County Clerk Linda Stover said a home address isn’t necessary for someone to register to vote. People just need a mailing address, and that can be a post office box or a shelter. 

Hannah Colton / KUNM

Early voting starts Oct. 19 for local elections, including the Albuquerque Public Schools board. Its members are usually retired, as it’s an unpaid position with the time commitment of a part-time job. Those constraints led one board candidate to drop out of the race this fall.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Big-money influences political races at every level around the U.S. Part of the answer, advocates say, is giving candidates access to public money for their campaigns. Albuquerque voters are weighing a ballot question aimed at making the local campaign financing system a more realistic and competitive option.

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National politics command a lot of airtime and attention across the United States, but local elections can have a bigger impact on the day-to-day. A citywide election is coming up in Albuquerque. Tuesday, Oct. 8, before 5 p.m. is the deadline for folks to register to vote online. And starting Tuesday, for the first time, people will be able to register to vote in-person on the same day they cast their ballots.

Hannah Colton / KUNM

Forty-five people turned in paperwork Tuesday to run for office in a slew of local elections in Bernalillo County. Local government, education, and soil and water conservancy seats will all be on county ballots this November.