Michelle Lujan Grisham to become New Mexico’s first Democratic Latina governor
Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham will become New Mexico’s first Latina Democratic governor after defeating Rep. Steve Pearce (R) Tuesday.
Lujan Grisham, the outgoing chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC), was widely favored to win, as she ran a strong fundraising operation in a year that favored Democrats.
She’ll replace the country’s only currently-serving Latina governor, Republican Susana Martinez, who was term-limited.
New Mexico is 48 percent Hispanic — the state with the highest proportional Hispanic population.
Lujan Grisham and Pearce provided a stark contrast between a progressive Democrat with a long history of activism on healthcare issues and a conservative Republican who somewhat softened his message for the 2018 race.
As leader of the CHC, Lujan Grisham was thrust to the forefront of the immigration debate, amid President Trump’s focus on immigration and the legislative debate surrounding the issue.
Martinez’s eight years in office were marked by head-butting between the governor’s office and the Democratic-led legislature.
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