ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A top Democrat Senate leader lost his re-election bid Tuesday after being targeted by Republican Gov. Susana Martinez in one of the most costly legislative races in this year's general election.
Roswell farmer Cliff Pirtle defeated Senate President Tim Jennings, a Roswell Democrat, according to unofficial returns.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico voters have approved one of the proposed constitutional amendments aimed at revamping the Public Regulation Commission, one of the state's most powerful, highest paid and most scandal-plagued bodies.
The amendment allows the state Legislature to establish minimum qualifications for PRC candidates.
Currently, a candidate needs only to be 18, a New Mexico resident for at least one year and have no felony convictions.
Two other proposed amendments that target PRC duties have yet to be decided.
New Mexico voters are deciding the fate of the state's five electoral votes for the presidency along with an open Senate seat on Election Day.
New Mexico has gone back and forth for the past three presidential cycles, and had been considered a battleground early on. But polls this summer and fall consistently showed President Barack Obama with a solid lead over GOP nominee Mitt Romney. The Republican National Committee in September pulled key staffers and sent them to more competitive states.
New Mexico is filling an open U.S. Senate seat in a race that has seen the candidates relentlessly punching away at each other over jobs, health care and taxes.
Voters decide Tuesday whether Democrat Martin Heinrich, Republican Heather Wilson or Independent American candidate Jon Barrie has offered the most appealing recipe for dealing with the nation's economic problems.
The winner will succeed Democrat Jeff Bingaman, who is retiring after 30 years in the Senate.
Albuquerque voters will send a new representative to Washington on Tuesday after a relatively quiet campaign between the two candidates.
Democrat Michelle Lujan Grisham is running against Republican Janice Arnold-Jones in the 1st Congressional District, which represents most of the city. The winner will replace two-term Democratic Rep. Martin Heinrich, who is running for the Senate.
It is the most competitive of the three congressional districts in New Mexico. In the other two, Democratic Rep. Ben Ray Lujan and GOP Rep. Steve Pearce are favored to hold on to their seats.
Officials say attendance at Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta fell from last year.
Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta organizers announced Monday that estimated attendance at this year's nine-day event last month was more than 714,000. Officials say the number is down slightly from 2011's estimated 737,466 visits.
Organizers blamed the declined on poor weather which forced the cancellation of some events that historically have been the most attended.
Officials say the event attracted balloons from 19 countries.
A City Council member in Santa Fe is proposing rules for an area of his city that would regulate alcohol sales and create a healthier food zone by banning new restaurant drive-thrus.
The Albuquerque Journal reports (http://bit.ly/SngcJ0 ) that City Council member Carmichael Dominguez is trying to put strict rules in place governing certain types of businesses in the Airport Road area of southwest Santa Fe.
Dominguez says his proposal is an attempt to improve the area's quality of life.
The races for governor and attorney general have brought renewed attention to a proposal that would create a two-tiered driver's license system in Washington to address the issue of driving by immigrants who can't provide proof of legal U.S. residency.
Washington and New Mexico remain the only two states in the country not to require proof of legal U.S. residency when applying for a driver's license.
An endangered Mexican gray wolf will be released into the wild from Brookfield Zoo in suburban Chicago.
The Chicago Zoological Society runs Brookfield Zoo and says the female wolf will be moved Saturday to a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service refuge in New Mexico. They say the 4 1/2-year-old wolf, named Ernesta, will be paired with a mate for potential release. Wildlife biologists will put the pair through a "boot camp" to prepare them for the wild.
New Mexico Sens. Jeff Bingaman and Tom Udall are asking President Obama to designate the Rio Grande Gorge near Taos and the Organ Mountains in southern New Mexico as national monuments.
The senators, who are sponsors of legislation that would elevate the sites to national conservation and wilderness areas, wrote a letter to Obama asking him to use his authority to establish the sites as National Monuments because a congressional logjam has made it difficult to pass their bill.
Months after the federal Indian Health Service said it was finalizing a policy that would make emergency contraception more accessible to American Indian women, advocates say they're still waiting. And in the meantime, Native women face a patchwork of policies at hospitals and clinics that don't always ensure timely access to the medication.
New Mexico has huge potential for developing aerospace and aviation industries because of its weather and wide open air space. But industry leaders say it also has many hurdles to overcome, including high taxes and a reputation as a poor state with crime and bad schools.
The American Red Cross has delivered 180 cases of drinking water to residents of the Navajo Nation Ramah Chapter House after a well pump outage in the small northwestern New Mexico village of Mountain View.
Officials say 150 families were affected Wednesday.
The water request came to the Red Cross from emergency management officials at the Chapter House and the Cibola County Emergency Manager.
Emergency vehicles from the Red Cross Regional headquarters in Albuquerque and from Farmington delivered the water Wednesday evening.
The city of Albuquerque is holding a number of events in honor of Rudolfo Anaya's novel Bless Me, Ultima. The Rio Grande Nature Center State Park is hosting tomorrow's "Walk in the Bosque" to allow residents to learn about plants in the New Mexico-based novel. Bless Me, Ultima is a coming-of-age story set in 1940s eastern New Mexico. The movie of the novel was released yesterday.
Third-party candidates Gary Johnson and Virgil Goode are blips in the presidential race, but even that might make them a big deal.
Democratic President Barack Obama's campaign quietly has been keeping track of the two former Republican officeholders who could prove pivotal in key states where he and Republican challenger Mitt Romney are in a tight race.
Johnson is a former New Mexico governor running as the Libertarian Party nominee. Goode is a conservative ex-congressman from Virginia competing as the Constitution Party candidate.