Common Cause NM Statement on Mayoral Candidate and Bernalillo County Sheriff Manny Gonzales’ Potential Contribution Violation
- Heather Ferguson
It is shocking that someone who is charged with upholding the law is breaking it. This alleged misconduct serves to undermine the city’s public financing program, which was passed in 2005 by 69% of Albuquerque’s voters. The program is designed to offer qualified candidates the option to use public monies to fund campaigns, instead of relying on high-dollar private donors.
This program was supported by voters who wanted a funding process for Albuquerque city candidates that would encourage them to engage with all members of Albuquerque’s communities through the process of collecting voter signatures and $5 contributions for candidates to qualify to use the program.
Additionally, the voters supported this process with the understanding that it would help candidates rebuild public trust because they would not be influenced by a need to solicit contributions from more well-heeled donors and could spend more time focusing on pressing issues facing Albuquerque’s citizens.
Using this system in a fraudulent manner does not honor the intent of the program, and the public should question whether they should take such a candidate seriously if they cannot follow the clear rules set forth by the program in the city’s election code.