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Quick News Daily Podcast

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A fresh sounding news podcast that saves you time. Ditch the formal, “both sides” coverage for facts and analysis from an outlet outside of the D.C. mainstream.

Why Trump is Targeting Albuquerque

New Mexico seems like such a random target, yet sending their secret police to Albuquerque could be an entirely political move by Donald Trump and Bill Barr.

Why Albuquerque?

It seems like such a random target. In my neck of the woods, New Mexico doesn’t get any press unless there’s something dealing with aliens. Yet out of nowhere, Donald Trump and full-time Interior Minister, part-time Attorney General, Bill Barr, have targeted Albuquerque (along with Chicago) as their next destination to deploy their secret police. But why?

To find an answer, I started thinking about the state in general, then its prominent political figures, and then it hit me: the governor.

New Mexico’s governor is Michelle Lujan Grisham, the first Democratic woman to hold the office, as well as the first Democratic Latina governor in U.S. history. But, more importantly, Lujan Grisham’s name has been floated as a possibility to star alongside Joe Biden as his pick for Vice President.

Frankly, the more you look into Governor Lujan Grisham’s story, the more sense she makes as a dark-horse contender. On both personal and policy levels, the governor’s experiences mirror Biden’s past, as well as his vision for the future.

In terms of experiences in her private life, like Biden, Lujan Grisham has her own history of personal loss. In 2004, her husband was lost suddenly to a ruptured cerebral aneurysm while he was jogging. She later filed a wrongful death lawsuit, alleging that her husband’s doctors missed the connection between his migraines and a more serious problem. However, that suit was eventually dropped.

In the legislative sense, the governor fits the moment perfectly. Before running for Congress, Lujan Grisham served first as the Director of New Mexico’s Agency on Aging from 1991 to 2004, then later as the state’s Secretary of Health from 2004 to 2007. Her leadership role on aging could be a particularly helpful asset to Biden, who is already beating Trump with senior voters. Overall, what better contrast (and new ally to Dr. Fauci) would there be to the current administration than a former Health Secretary?

One of her biggest accomplishments in her time as governor was her executive order declaring that New Mexico would join the U.S. Climate Alliance, as well as several New Mexico-specific actions, such as the creation of a New Mexico Climate Change Task Force that will provide strategic direction for reducing statewide greenhouse gas emissions to be in line with the Paris Climate Agreement’s’ goals. This decisive action could bolster Biden’s ambitions for the climate as part of his “Build Back Better” plan.

So, maybe the seemingly-random Albuquerque isn’t so random after all. Perhaps Trump will try to paint New Mexico as “out of control” in the event that the governor is chosen as Biden’s running mate. However, after previously going toe-to-toe with another possible VP pick and losing in the court of public opinion, it’s difficult to tell if this characterization would work this time.

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