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Bill Richardson’s Worst Nightmare

According to an article (subscription) in today’s Albuquerque Journal, Bill Richardson’s campaign chairman doesn’t hold Republican gubernatorial candidate, John Dendahl, in particularly high esteem:

Richardson’s campaign chairman Dave Contarino called the switch “an act of desperation” and called Dendahl “a partisan, negative bomb-thrower.”

Hmm, sure seems to me like Mr. Contarino just threw the first “negative bomb.” John Dendahl is not even a candidate for 24 hours and the Richardson campaign is already on the attack:

Contarino of the Richardson re-election campaign said Dendahl’s candidacy might push some Republicans over to the Richardson camp.

“I think that it’s an act of desperation for a party to reach back into the past to someone who represents the nasty politics of division and gridlock,” Contarino said. “The contrast is incredible – a bi-partisan governor who crosses party lines to get things done versus a partisan, negative bomb-thrower.”

Uh, excuse me? A bi-partisan governor who crosses party lines to get things done?

Which Governor are we talking about? Mr. Contarino couldn’t possibly be talking about Governor Bill Richardson. Last I checked, Governor Richardson had so clearly drawn partisan lines in the sand that funding for children (subscription) living in Republican districts – no matter how great the need – were guaranteed a veto.

As far as pushing Republicans into the Richardson camp, I think Governor Richardson and his campaign staff would be better to focus on the tens of thousands of disgruntled Democrats out there. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you better take a look at the primary election results on the Secretary of State’s website. It seems that out of 160,575 Democratic voters 53,799 refused to push the button to elect Bill Richardson.

Read that again… 53,799 – a whopping 33.5% of Democratic voters – REFUSED TO VOTE for Bill Richardson.

No wonder Mr. Contarino is already throwing unprovoked “negative bombs.” My readers may or may not know that I have a masters degree in counseling, and it sure does seem that Mr. Contarino is exhibiting a classic case of projection. The NO CONFIDENCE VOTE of the state’s Democrats combined with the seemingly daily unveiling by the state’s news outlets of the cronyism and political payback policies of the Richardson Adminstration are obviously beginning to take a toll on poor Mr. Contarino.

Hopefully, Mr. Contarino can find a good support group to deal with his issues. Otherwise, I’m concerned that news stories – like the one that shared the front page today (subscription) with the Dendahl article – are going to put him over the edge.

After all, it can’t be easy to lie in bed at night knowing that your boss’ opponent doesn’t have to create any “negative bombs.” Instead, all John Dendahl has to do is pick up the newspaper and read about the 118% profit a political contributor was able to make in 28 months because the Governor was first willing to sign a change in law, and then follow that up by allowing the Board of Finance, which Richardson chairs, to ink the deal.

The Governor’s friends just made $3.2 million in 28 months for a $50,000 political contribution. That’s a deal that would even make Angelo Garcia and Kent Nelson green with envy.

Well, at least on the upside neither Mr. Contarino nor Governor Richardson have to worry about Attorney General Patricia Madrid conducting an investigation. After all, it will probably be awhile until the U.S. Attorney’s office can seek indictments, secure witness testimony and conduct a trial. You know, all the things that need to occur before Patricia Madrid realizes that there are crimes to be prosecuted.