Mayor: R.J. Berry
D1: Ken Sanchez
D3: Isaac Benton
D5: Dan Lewis
D7: Michael Cook
D9: Don Harris
Quarter-Cent Transportation Tax: Yes
All the bonds: Yes
All the propositions: Yes
Romero: People Wanted a Change
"You know what? I really thought you were going to pull this off." That's a young woman at Richard Romero's house consoling him as the news station scrolls disappointing numbers across the screen. "It wasn't for lack of effort," says a young man in a suit. "That's what we didn't know, was how many would just vote for Berry."
"You ready to go outside?" asks KOB reporter Eric Kahnert. Romero exits his home first, followed by his core campaign staff. Under the blinding spotlight outside, he waits to acknowledge his loss live on television. The cameraman works on the shot. Supporters continue to trickle out of the house, and keys emerge from pockets. They're ready to head home. They shake hands with the man they thought would be the next mayor.
A monitor on the ground next to the news van is flickering. Romero leans down, and the reporter squats next to him. They watch Mayor Martin Chavez give a not-quite concession speech. Family and friends lean in for the view. Chavez says something about a "first-class transition."
Now to Romero. He says all the right things. Berry was a gentleman during the campaign. And Romero's own campaign was up against the machine at City Hall, he points out. People wanted a change, and they're going to get one.
But is it a good change? That's what I ask after the cameras are off and the friends disperse. "I think it will be," he says. "I was not happy with the way things were going."
And then there's the elephant in the room. In this nonpartisan race, it seems Republican Berry nailed down the conservative vote, while Romero and Chavez split the Dems down the middle. "Obviously the Republican Party coalesced around Berry," Romero says. "That's the way it works. Independents played a huge part in this, too."
But that's not the last you'll hear from Romero. He's been in politics a long time. He's won some. He's lost some. "I've been down this road before," he says.
Live Mayoral Race Updates
The moustache Is winning
According to the City of Albuquerque, with 105 out of 186 of absentee, early and precinct votes counted, conservative republican Richard Berry has been in the lead all night with 41 percent of the vote, while democrat incumbent Mayor Martin Chavez hangs on with 35 percent and democrat Richard Romero trails with 23 percent.
City Council Race: In District 3 Isaac Benton leads Alan Armijo 61 to 38 percent, in District 5 Dan Lewis leads Michael Cadigan 55 to 44 percent and in District 9 Don Harris leads David Barbour 79 to 20 percent.
In addition, voters seem to be in favor of the Transportation Gross Receipts Tax, with 59 percent of citizens in support.
Results continue to roll in, so stay tuned ...
Chavez Holes Up
At the Mayor Martin Chavez headquarters, doors are locked. Certain people are being allowed inside to watch results. It looks pretty grim from what I can see. The mayor appears stressed. Reporters are pacing the O'Neill's parking lot or hovering near their cars. We've been told Chavez is going to show up at O'Neill's at 9 p.m.
I've covered elections for 20 years, and I've never seen a candidate who holes up behind locked doors to watch election results.
When polls close, results are posted on the doors of the polling locations. It looks like Chavez is receiving results location by location. It's possible that he'll know the results before the public.
V.18 No.35 | 8/27/2009
Ortiz y Pino
When Barack Obama took office, I remember saying to a friend, “In a way, I feel sorry for the guy; there are so many messes, so many emergencies he has to deal with all at once, it’s gotta be overwhelming. Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan; an economy headed south in a hurry; immigration, health care and education reform; Guantanamo; the hopeless black hole of the ‘war on drugs.’ I mean, how’s he even going to know where to begin?”