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Published: August 21, 2018
Peter DeBenedittis

What’s worse than a sore loser? A sore winner.

Hello sports fans. I say that because of some comments I read under the post announcing I would have a weekly column for New Mexico Democrats for Democracy. Many of the posts trashing me accused me of endorsing Pearce (false – please see my FB page and you see I’ve endorsed all Democrats in this election). Some commenters saw fit to attack my character. To those doing so, please spend 18 months with no salary running for office, spend $40K of your own money, and work every day without any time off to advance policies that help people, and then I’ll bother reading and responding to what you post. Till then, those spewing uninformed opinions are little more than traffic noise in the background of my consciousness and are unworthy of being taken seriously.

Here’s the rub. I’ve got the Rockies and Broncos to root for when I’m in the mood for team sports. But politics is real life. I could give a damn if Team Blue beats Team Red. I’m concerned about what policies those teams are implementing. And the track record of corporate Dems is wanting – during the Bill Clinton & Barack Obama years, we saw wages stagnate while inflation crept up, keeping millions of us poor. We saw unions diminished and social safety networks defunded while dollars for overseas war grew massively. Under Obama we did see major steps towards health care and better civil rights—thank you for that! But don’t fool yourselves. Data over the past 20 years is pretty clear, our elected officials FROM BOTH PARTIES don’t care what we think – they answer to their funders, not the people who have elected them:


“The preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy. . . unless you're an ‘economic elite.’”

I’m using the 2018 election as an opportunity to forgive and forget. I’m going to support Democrats in good faith, as I promised I would during my campaign, and hope they’ll return the favor and support just a single progressive issue if we take control of the state house and the Governor's office in November. But truth be told, I’m not very hopeful. I’ve had major Democratic candidates in New Mexico tell me they don’t need to worry about progressive issues because progressives won’t vote for Steve Pearce. I interpret this to mean we’re stuck being last in wages and education because the boogeyman of Pearce is enough to get elected without having real policies that help the poorest New Mexicans.

What’s even more silly is how many people have attacked Jeff Apodaca for trying to break out of the Team Red/Team Blue stalemate and daring to encourage Steve Pearce to invest 5% of the permanent funds back into New Mexico. It’s bad enough to hear all the racist rhetoric from shameless Republicans pandering for votes, but to have the same kind of language used by Democrats who see Republicans and anyone who talks to them as subhuman is sickening.

It’s not about Team Red vs. Team Blue!

It’s about what policies help New Mexicans – PERIOD.

And investing our own money in ourselves is critical to pulling New Mexico out of being the poorest state in the country. The more money that circulates through our own businesses and employees, the richer we become. If Pearce is willing to listen to and campaign on that message, good for him and us. If Lujan-Grisham chooses to campaign and act on it, even better. Jeff is trying to encourage both candidates to support an economic policy that has no downside and will really help us. Who’s listening? I’m supporting Congresswoman Lujan-Grisham for Governor, I’m asking her to campaign on and support policies like this that benefit everyday New Mexicans.

I refuse to simply vote for the lesser of two evils. I reject anyone who tells me Republicans are worse, so be satisfied with table scraps offered by Democrats. No, those days are over. Please join me in demanding candidates put People First, and hold them accountable if they do not. Showing support for investing over a Billion Dollars of our own Investment Funds back into New Mexico is a good start. It’s not about being red or blue. It’s about all of us enjoying more green.

Peter DeBenedittis

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