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Dotdotdotdashdashdashdotdotdot: High court calls on SOS to perform job as election nears

In a stunning blow to governance by partisan paternalism, the New Mexico Supreme Court ruled on Friday, Sept. 19, that the Secretary of State does not have authority to remove advisory initiatives approved by county commissions from the general election ballot. This high court ruling means that citizens of Bernalillo County will get to vote on two nonbinding polling questions regarding decriminalization of small quantities of marijuana and raising sales tax one-eighth of a cent to fund mental health services.

In an oral presentation of the Court's ruling, Supreme Court Justice Barbara Vigil said New Mexico Secretary of State Dianna Duran failed to perform a mandatory duty of her office by refusing to include county-approved initiatives on the general election ballot; the Court ordered her to do so.

If you haven't already, you'll hear more about Duran in the weeks to come. Her unsuccessful attempt to quash Bernalillo and Santa Fe County advisory initiatives via unilateral memorandum and petititions of both federal and state courts is only part of the coming Duran-centric news cycle. As the incumbent candidate for Secretary of State, Duran may already be familiar to you.

In the wake of the Court's decision, Duran issued a written statement: “We of course will comply with this order, but what it means is that Bernalillo County voters will be using a ballot printed in tiny 7-point font, just so people can be presented with a meaningless public opinion poll.” How can the opinion of voterssome of whom obviously voted for hernow seem meaningless to Duran?

Her campaign website, diannaduran.com, colorfully presents polarizing rhetoric. On a page titled "Dianna Duran v. Maggie Toulouse Oliver: The Strikingand very AlarmingContrasts," Duran calls herself the "target" of "extreme far-left activists of the Democratic Party." She goes on to contrast herself with Toulouse Oliver using all-caps and underlined keywords like "DARK MONEY," "political consultant" and "left-wing activism and partisanship" in reference to Toulouse Oliver.

In contrast, Toulouse Oliver's minimalist campaign website, maggietoulouseoliver.com, focuses on endorsements, and finding criticism of Duran is more challenging. (On the landing page of Duran's website, an arrow guides you straight to the aforementioned "Contrasts" page.) After clicking through Toulouse Oliver's bio and thoughts on the job, the news section of her site reveals her official statement on the Supreme Court decision. And it is critical of Duran, but phrases like "overtly partisan and activist interference in the ballot creation process" and "blatant disrespect for the separation of powers in our government" pale in comparison to Duran's chart that lists Toulouse Oliver's background and experience as "Campaign Manager for Dark Money Orgs."

But don't take my word for it. Visit their respective websites, linked above, and form your own opinion. For even more insight into their educational, professional and political backgrounds, news, endorsements and campaign contribution disclosures, visit the Ballotpedia pages for Dianna Duran and Maggie Toulouse Oliver.

The Alibi encourages our readership to remain politically informed. To that end, please keep your eyes peeled for websclusive and print-edition political news and election coverage as the 2014 general election nears. And be sure to pick up a copy of the Alibi Election Guide, which hits stands on Thursday, Oct. 30. On a personal note, I've always appreciated the way Halloween and elections coincide. After all, there's really nothing scarier than citizen apathy, low voter turnout and resulting ineffective, subpar leadership and representation.

V.23 No.38 | 9/18/2014
Cinema 5 Distributing

Crib Notes

Crib Notes: Sept. 18, 2014

From APD undercover to democratic litigation, test your knowledge of last week’s New Mexico news with the Alibi pop quiz.

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Week in Sloth

“NCIS” goes to New Orleans, Tim & Eric tell “Bedtime Stories” and FOX gives us a Batman-less Gotham City.

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news

The Daily Word in Zeus, health care and Rebel Donut

South African Olympian Oscar Pistorius has been found guilty of manslaughter for the fatal shooting of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

The Navy is searching for a missing pilot after two jets crashed into the Pacific Ocean.

A woman in Blackstone, Mass., was arrested after the remains of three infants were found in her home.

Sorry, Mr. President. I was expecting Beyoncé.

Around 250,000 people in Virginia will lose their health insurance at the end of November.

Rebel Donut is going to be featured on the show “Donut Showdown” tonight on the Cooking Channel!

A crafty thief used her kid as she stole a credit card, then proceeded to give herself the royal treatment with a shopping spree.

A woman and her 2-year-old son are on the mend after two dogs brutally attacked them.

On comparing Albuquerque violence to other cities …

Zeus, the world's tallest dog, passed away this week. RIP big guy.

News

The Daily Word in APD, melanoma and kindness

A USA Today article published yesterday quoted Albuquerque Police Chief Gorden Eden recognizing "a systemic failure in ... ability to track employee misconduct." Eden went to say, "I believe there are people on the force who shouldn't be on the force.'' But Eden told USA Today that police union contracts make it difficult to enforce retroactive discipline within bounds of a union contract, stating "Yes, we may be stuck with them."

Today Albuquerque Police Officers Association President Stephanie Lopez told KOAT that she initially felt disappointed and angered that Eden would represent officers in this light. But Lopez and Eden have since talked and are now on the same page.

SolaranRX Inc. has licensed a groundbreaking method for diagnosing and treating melanoma. The process was developed by UNM Pharmaceutical Sciences and DermatologyAssociate Professor Dr. Yubin Miao. The technology involves a peptide that binds to melanoma cells which can be infused with imaging and therapeutic radionuclides to assess and treat melanoma.

Outfitted in full gear, Albuquerque firefighters climbed stairs 110 stories today in honor of those lost in the 9/11 terror attacks.

Starting next week Alaska Airlines will offer nonstop daily flights from Albuquerque to Seattle.

On this day of remembrance, a quote by Vonnegutian protagonist Eliot Rosewater seems appropriate: "Hello, babies. Welcome to Earth. It's hot in the summer and cold in the winter. It's round and wet and crowded. At the outside, babies, you've got about a hundred years here. There's only one rule that I know of babies: God damn it, you've got to be kind."

V.23 No.37 | 9/11/2014
From left, Earth’s core members and Porter Robinson
Courtesy of the artists

Show Up!

In Concert with a Cheshire Cat Grin

Four wondrous, reverie-inducing musical adventures

Whether you’re hankering for Americana, experimental, psychedelic sludge or electro house, Show Up! has all the deets. Now with A/V!

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Crib Notes

Crib Notes: Sept. 11, 2014

From UNM athletics to t-shirts that didn’t jibe with TEDxABQ, test your knowledge of last week’s New Mexico news with the Alibi pop quiz.

[ more >> ] [ permalink ]

Captain America

Music Magnified

Collected Works

A paean to analog Burque music comps

Captain America waxes nostalgic and visits the lab where a diverse, new sampler of the present-day ABQ music scene was formulated.

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Week in Sloth

What’s going on around the TV dial this week? How about a zombie TV series, two reality shows about building log cabins and the “History of Sex”?

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