Only four months until the New Mexico primary. And while most folks around here are most concerned about the U.S. Senate races -- and some with legislative, PRC and county offices, there's also a presidential primary going on too.
In recent presidential elections both Democrats and Republicans wrapped up their races long before our state's June Primary. In 2004 and 2008 the Dems held a caucus here in early February, which brought a lot of the candidates here both years. (Some cynics say that the Democratic Party's vote-counting process in 2008 served as a model for Republican vote counters in Nevada and Iowa this year.)
According to a news release from the Secretary of State's Office, something called the New Mexico Presidential Nominating Committee met today at the Supreme Court. Said panel certified Republican candidates Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, and Ron Paul. President Obama was certified as the only candidate for the Democratic ticket.
But -- take note, Buddy Roemer -- other Republicans or Democrats can appear on the presidential primary ballot by successfully collecting and
submitting approximately 16,000 signatures on or before March 12.
The committee is made up of the Chief Justice of the New Mexico Supreme Court, the chairmen of the Democratic and Republican parties, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the President Pro Tem of the Senate, and the minority floor leaders of the House and Senate.