KatyDuhigg
Katy Duhigg

State Senate District 10 is one of the few places we will find a contested race among Democrats in the June 2nd primary. District 10 encompasses parts of the North Valley, Westside, Los Ranchos de Albuquerque and southern Rio Rancho

Two Candidates are facing off, with the winner running against the incumbent, Republican Candace Gould. The candidates are former City Clerk, election-protection and consumer-protection attorney Katy Duhigg. She will face business attorney Alan Hall.

Each candidate was submitted seven questions which they answered during the last week of April 2020. Their answers are below.

Alan Hall
Alan Hall

Question & Answer Session with Candidate, Katy Duhigg

Question 1. How do you see New Mexico balancing its budget with such a huge hit the oil and gas industry has sustained?

Answer: The Legislature needs to convene a special session as quickly as possible after the stay-at-home order is lifted to address the shortfalls, put some projects on hold, create a bold economic stimulus package (perhaps using severance tax funds) to get businesses going again and put people back to work. We must focus on economic diversification for our state. We must focus on local, small businesses, ensuring they are able to re-open and thrive under a new normal. We need to address GRT pyramiding, the ultimate burden of which is borne by New Mexico households and is a hidden tax with regressive implications. We must develop and implement a strategic plan for growing other industries (value-added agriculture, healing/health care services, etc) to grow and stabilize the non-fossil fuel sectors.   

Question 2. New Mexico still has a pre-Roe law on its books which is close to a total abortion ban. Will you vote to repeal this law?

Answer: Yes. I support getting rid of this outdated law and keeping this very personal decision between a woman and her healthcare provider, without politicians interfering. A strong majority of New Mexicans believe abortion must remain safe and legal, regardless of their own moral views on abortion. 

Question 3. How would you have voted on the Red Flag law passed in the 2020 legislative session?

Answer: Yes

Question 4. What is your stance on marijuana legalization?

Answer: I support the legalization of adult-use of marijuana, along with responsible regulation. This is a reasonable means of diversifying our economy, as long as appropriate safeguards are in place and that all stakeholders, from law enforcement to existing medical marijuana providers, have a seat at the table.

Question 5. What is the issue which most concerns your voters in Senate District 10?

Answer: In the wake of our current crisis, it is the economy and health care.

Question 6. What has Republican Senator Candace Gould done for New Mexico and District 10?

Answer: Bottom line: District 10 needs a stronger voice to fight for the hard-working New Mexicans who reside there. Sen. Gould has endangered women’s health by voting against the archaic 1969 abortion ban that requires a woman to seek permission from a group of strangers to access abortion care. She opposed health care protections for New Mexicans with pre-existing conditions in the 2019 Legislation session. She has failed to protect the hard-working people who live there by advocating for the so-called “Right-To-Work” laws.

Question 7. What separates you from your primary opponent?

Answer: As far as policy goes, one of the biggest differences between Mr. Hall and myself is that I am a consumer-protection attorney, and he is a corporate attorney. He takes a free-market approach to economic development, whereas I support sustainable, strong economic development that supports small businesses but does not sacrifice worker or consumer protections. Another big difference between us is that I have been endorsed by Planned Parenthood Votes New Mexico, Rio Grande Chapter of the Sierra Club, AFSCME Council 18, American Federation of Teachers – New Mexico, Albuquerque Teachers Federation, National Education Association of New Mexico, United Academics of UNM, AFT New Mexico Retirees, Albuquerque Federation of Classified Professionals, Southwest Regional Council of Carpenters, and Conservation Voters New Mexico Action Fund (so far) www.KatyDuhigg.com.

Question & Answer Session with Candidate, Alan Hall

Question 1. How do you see New Mexico balancing its budget with such a huge hit the oil and gas industry has sustained?

Answer: In the short term (i.e., the 2020/21 fiscal year), we may manage by significant cuts to discretionary spending, and by drawing on reserves (including the so-called “rainy day fund”) that may be tapped through legislative action alone.  If the COVID-19 crisis continues into the following fiscal year, loans from the Severance Tax Permanent Fund may be necessary.  In the long term, we must assume that oil and gas will never again be a cash cow, and we absolutely must diversify New Mexico’s economy, through expanded renewable energy production, and by attracting many more retirees to New Mexico.   

Question 2. New Mexico still has a pre-Roe law on its books which is close to a total abortion ban. Will you vote to repeal this law?

Answer: Yes. Absolutely. 

Question 3. How would you have voted on the Red Flag law passed in the 2020 legislative session?

Answer: I would have voted for it. I think we also need a statute requiring secure (i.e., locked) storage of guns in homes with children.

Question 4. What is your stance on marijuana legalization?

Answer: I am not particularly enthusiastic about legalization, but I will vote for it. It is an idea whose time has come.

Question 5. What is the issue which most concerns your voters in Senate District 10?

Answer: COVID-19, and the associated economic crisis.

Question 6. What has Republican Senator Candace Gould done for New Mexico and District 10?

Answer: Nothing substantive. Senator Gould sponsors very few bills, and has little to say. Her function, apparently, is to be a reliable Republican vote on every significant issue, and nothing more.

Question 7. What separates you from your primary opponent?

Answer: I regard Ms. Duhigg as an orthodox Democratic progressive. There’s nothing wrong in that, except that I don’t believe that such a candidate can win District 10, which has gone Republican the last six elections. I am economically pragmatic and fiscally responsible. Senator Gould will get nowhere attacking me a “tax and spend” Democrat, and I intend to attack her lazy thinking about the criminalization of abortion head-on.