Editorial: Public officials make puzzling statements

Three eyebrow raisers from this election season:

  • Gov. Susana Martinez's aggressiveness in promoting Republican Angie Spears over Republican Pat Woods in the state Senate race has surprised and frustrated GOP leaders on the east side of the state.

As best we can tell, Woods and Spears have the same views on the issues and neither has the political experience to "shake up the status quo" as the governor so desires.

But when asked about the candidates' mirror images, Martinez strongly suggests Woods' words don't match his actions. She points to $2,500 in contributions Woods has made to Democratic candidates since 2004.

"He can't have it both ways," she says, meaning he can't donate to Democrats and be trusted to carry out her marching orders.

State Rep. Anna Crook, in a guest column published in today's Quay County Sun and scheduled for Thursday's Clovis News Journal, describes the campaign tactics as "mean spirited … slanderous and untrue."

Retiring Republican Sen. Clint Harden has endorsed Woods, another indication New Mexico's Republicans can't get along with themselves — never mind convince Democrats to do anything.

  • Incumbent Curry County Commissioner Dan Stoddard has listed five points he would like to focus on if he's re-elected, including "Organize sheriff's department for future growth of Curry County."

Stoddard said Tuesday that by "organize" he only meant to help the sheriff get more money and equipment so the department can prepare for future growth.

Whew. For a minute there, we thought he was planning to help Sheriff Matt Murray direct law officers.

That would be a bad idea given the commissioners' track record micro-managing the county jail.

  • Incumbent Curry County Commissioner Wendell Bostwick said "there have not been any escapes since I began my term as county commissioner."

Bostwick said he does not count Narcizo Soto as a county jail escapee because that inmate ran out of the jail in 2011 while on work detail.

It's hardly an "escape" when a prisoner just walks out the door while his guard isn't paying attention, we suppose. Let's call it a "departure," since "escape" has such a negative connotation.

Maybe Curry County doesn't need a new jail or better guards after all — it only needs a better public relations department.

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