The New Mexican’s endorsement for District Attorney

Posted: May 23, 2012 in Uncategorized
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First Judicial District Attorney Angela “Spence” Pacheco. (File photo by Natalie Guillen/The New Mexican)

Newspaper endorsements are odd. While they reside on the opinion page, readers rarely differentiate these from actual editorial content and it leads to the formation of opinions of the newspaper’s perceived bias.

There are those within the walls of newspapers that wish endorsements would go away and some who believe they serve a good purpose for readers. I’m no fan in general and I can assure you with 100 percent honesty that I have never been asked in my time as a reporter for an opinion to help influence an endorsement. In the case of The New Mexican, as it should be everywhere, the endorsement decisions are not in any way influenced by the reporters covering the candidates.

So, on to Wednesday’s endorsement for the First Judicial District Attorney’s primary in our three-county district of Los Alamos, Rio Arriba and Santa Fe counties.

Challenger Lloyd Drager, the former Chief Deputy DA under Henry Valdez wants the office back, so to speak, from incumbent Angela “Spence” Pacheco, who won in 2008 after Valdez stepped down.

I won’t say who I will vote for (or if I even will for this race), but The New Mexican has endorsed SPENCE PACHECO.

Here is a blurb from Wednesday’s endorsement:

The New Mexican believes Pacheco has earned a second term (no Republican is running, so the primary victory is tantamount to election). She spent much of the first four years putting the office into the 21st century, eliminating a backlog of cases and ensuring that technology could support the work of attorneys. She is professional in her dealings with the community, law enforcement and defense attorneys. That is more difficult than it might seem, especially when one of the agencies is the Rio Arriba County Sheriff’s Office, where cases sometimes cannot be prosecuted because initial investigative work is deficient. Because she has stood up to the sheriff, Tommy Rodella, and pointed out problems with his work, he is campaigning for her opponent. That in itself is an endorsement of Pacheco. For district attorney, we endorse Angela “Spence” Pacheco.

Here is the full endorsement. It’s a good read and by no means full of praise for Spence and her office, which has had its flaws:

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