Thursday, August 29, 2013

One Announcement, One No-Announcement-Yet

Former state Democratic Party Chairman Javier Gonzales announced this morning that he will make the crowded race for mayor even more crowded.

Sen. Michael Sanchez
He made it official at a crowded Cafe Castro's on Cerrillos Road surrounded by family -- including his father, former Mayor George Gonzales -- friends and supporters. You can read my first report on that HERE and there will be more in tomorrow's New Mexican.

Some reporters, including me, thought state Senate Majority Leader Michael Sanchez might be making his announcement that he'll seek the Democratic nomination for governor this morning at a scheduled interview at KUNM.

But we were wrong. Sanchez said he hadn't come to any decision yet but promised to announce whatever he decides by Labor Day.

Sanchez, D-Belen, was blunt about the fact that he's been going back and forth on his decision. "Had you asked me Monday, I'd have said `no,' but if you'd asked me yesterday, I'd have said `yes.'" He later said that when he left his driveway this morning, he was thinking he'd make the announcement on the radio today.

But he didn't.

Sanchez said he has had some discussions with possible campaign staff members and has looked at polling that indicates Republican Gov. Susana Martinez -- who has had public polls showing her having an approval rating better than 60 percent -- could be vulnerable.

But one of the factors giving him hesitation is the fact that he'd have to spend a whole year campaigning. Sanchez, a lawyer by trade, said he has cases with clients who might need his attention past the November 2014 general election.

He noted that he's used to running local, not state, races, in which going door to door is the chief method of campaigning. He said he would hate to give that up. Sanchez also said he wouldn't want to trust a statewide campaign to out-of-state campaign professionals.

Sanchez, 63, was hospitalized twice during this year's legislative session. The first time, he underwent an angioplasty stent procedure. But this morning, the senator he's feeling fine and had gotten a clean bill of health from his cardiologist.

When I told Sanchez that he didn't sound like a man who was going to run for governor, he said, "My wife tells me just the opposite."

I guess we'll know by Monday.

UPDATE: 3:10 pm Here's a video released by Gonzales' campaign. That green chili in the first frame reminds me I've got to get another bag roasted this weekend.