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Published: October 10, 2018
Brett Kokinadis

Look at the facts before deciding

I’m not a lying misogynist, but many go to the extent of name-calling to defend their candidate. New Mexico Democrats for Democracy started at the end of March with a purpose to inoculate the public with the best political cure possible — sunshine.

After nearly two years of rhetoric coming from Washington, D.C., I thought Democrats and the media were working to fight the terms “fake news” and “alternative facts.” I thought there was hope; as a Democrat, I thought I was on the side of reason and progress. I had hoped New Mexico would put this into practice and look at the evidence.

With New Mexico Democrats for Democracy, I set out to share the facts, the buried truths, and the secrets that got swept under the rug about career politicians. As droves of Democrats swim with the blue wave, I questioned if they were only racing to crash on the rocks — it appears they might be.

Being a newcomer to New Mexico politics, I certainly had a naive perception of the parties, voters and the media. Listening and speaking to candidates, voters and rhetoric, I learned one thing; many are brainwashed, fanatical supporters of party-line catchphrases and only accept facts when they support their views, hopes and beliefs.

Interviewing candidates from the Democratic, Republican and Libertarian parties, I was surprised (all right maybe not that surprised) to hear a very similar message on policy — a Grand Canyon echo of New Mexico’s problems. Most of us know our problems, what we should be listening for are solutions and real plans to turn New Mexico around, and those should be the unique differentiators in the candidates we elect. In short, we should be voting for the best candidate to solve our problems, not the best party.

Identity politics has cast a spell on voters. If a candidate echoes what the party says — if they tell us what the problem is — then they must be the solution, right? Wrong.

Smart leaders gather information, they analyze data, and most importantly, they use the best people they can find (or afford) to help them form a plan, test solutions and ultimately execute. Building a solution starts with a strong foundation of facts, and facts can’t be ignored if you desire to succeed.

New Mexico Democrats for Democracy focuses on finding and sharing facts on candidates, not fake news, not rumors, but real truths that come from hours of research, interviews, Inspection of Public Records Act requests and reports.

After being rooted in the center of New Mexico’s political social media, I’ve come to realize maybe Donald Trump was right when he said, “I could shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose any voters;” it indeed appears to be the like among the fanatics of Michelle Lujan Grisham, Steve Pearce, and Gary Johnson.

Whether you are voting early, by absentee ballot or on Election Day, your voice matters. Facts matter. Look at the facts and decide if you’re going to hire a candidate because of the letter next to their name, or hire the best candidate for the job. I certainly hope it’s the latter.

Brett Kokinadis is founder of New Mexico Democrats for Democracy. With more than 44,000 followers, it is a voice for all New Mexicans regardless of party affiliation, creating the most informed voters in New Mexico.

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