Republicans Callout Secretary of State for Trying to Sneak in Straight Party Voting Scheme

Dr. Gavin Clarkson, Republican Candidate for Secretary of State, Encourages County Clerks to Not Certify Straight Party Ballots

Dr. Gavin Clarkson, the Republican nominee for Secretary of State, released a memorandum this afternoon encouraging county clerks throughout New Mexico to refuse to certify any ballot that contains a straight party option. The missive is co-authored by Michael Hendricks and A. Blair Dunn, the Republican and Libertarian nominees for Attorney General respectively.

“We all recognize that our respective roles,” the attorneys wrote in their joint statement, “will be to enforce the law as enacted by the Legislature and signed by the Governor, regardless of whether we agree with the policy rationale.”

They promised, if elected, to enforce straight-party voting only if a law is passed requiring it, saying, “We all believe that such policy matters appropriately belong to the Legislature.”

After straight-party voting was repealed by a Democratic legislature and a Republican governor in 2001, proposals in the legislature to reauthorize it have failed three times to become law.

The multi-party group notes that “Numerous courts have held that repeal is an unambiguous expression of legislative intent.”

Oliver is further taken to task in the document for failing to provide adequate notice and public hearings as part of the prescribed rulemaking process.

Dr. Clarkson and Mr. Hendricks also announced they will file an amicus brief in support of the mandamus petition that Mr. Dunn is currently litigating before the New Mexico Supreme Court on behalf of Democrats, Independents, Libertarians, and Republicans to stop Wednesday’s unilateral action by the Secretary of State.

About Gavin Clarkson:
Dr. Gavin Clarkson is the Republican nominee for New Mexico Secretary of State. He is a former Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and Economic Development in the Department of the Interior and a former Associate Professor in the College of Business at New Mexico State University. He has a BA and MBA from Rice University, is a cum laude graduate of the Harvard Law School and is the first tribal member to ever earn a doctorate from the Harvard Business School (in Technology and Operations Management).