U.S. Rep. Deb Haaland secured her second term to represent New Mexico’s 1st Congressional District.
The Associated Press called the race for Haaland at 8:34 p.m. with partial results from roughly 96 percent of precincts reported.
Haaland was confident in her reelection campaign and said getting people out to vote was most important this year.
“We did everything we could do to get voters to the polls. That was our main concern, just making sure that everybody voted and had a way to vote and understood how they could vote,” Haaland told NM Political Report after the polls closed. “And that’s because this is the most important election of our lifetime.”
Haaland added that voters were motivated to vote this year.
“Democrats are energized because of this president, because this president has no plan for the pandemic, because this president has sown division in our country, he has sown hatred across our country,” she added. “That’s what we do make our voices heard — by voting to keep our democracy. And so I was really proud that we have so many people turnout.”
Haaland joined Congress in 2018, when she won the race for the open House of Representatives seat that was vacated by Michelle Lujan Grisham. Lujan Grisham had held the seat since 2013, but opted to run for Governor of New Mexico in the 2018 election.
Haaland, who is a member of Laguna Pueblo, made history that night as the first Indigenous woman to represent New Mexico and one of the first two Indigenous women elected to Congress in the U.S.’s history. In 2014, Haaland ran for Lieutenant Governor on former state Attorney General Gary King’s gubernatorial ticket, but ultimately lost to Republican Susana Martinez and Lieutenant Governor John Sanchez. She then served as chairwoman of the New Mexico Democratic Party from 2015 to 2017.
Garcia Holmes was the Republican nominee for Lieutenant Governor in 2018, when Lujan Grisham defeated Republican Steve Pearce in the general election.
New Mexico’s 1st Congressional District covers the central region of the state and includes parts of Santa Fe, Bernalillo, Valencia, Sandoval and Torrance counties. The district was once a Republican stronghold but has been held by Democrats since 2008, when Martin Heinrich won his election for the seat vacated by Republican Heather Wilson. Heinrich held the seat for two terms before winning the open U.S. Senate seat in 2012. Lujan Grisham succeeded Heinrich in the House of Representatives.
Haaland easily beat Republican opponent and former state legislator and Albuquerque city councilor, Janice Arnold-Jones and Libertarian Lloyd Princeton in the three-way 2018 race.
Garcia Holmes did not respond to requests for comment. Race trackers such as The Cook Political Report, Inside Elections and Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball, all considered the election an uncompetitive safe, Democratic win.
This article was initially published at NMpoliticalreport