In a new desperate move by embattled Santa Fe Mayor Alan Webber, his campaign is now sending out mailers implying that the Santa Fe New Mexican endorsed him and is opposed to his opponent, City Councilor JoAnne Vigil Coppler.
On the mailer, the text of a far-left New Mexican reader’s opinion piece bashing the City Councilor reads, “Vigil Coppler for mayor? Absolutely not,” with the words “My View” in small letters above it, while below it the Santa Fe New Mexican logo is affixed.
The mailer does not use the word “opinion” or credit the author of the opinion hit piece, written by Lis Lendvai, who erroneously deceived the public about Vigil Coppler’s stance on certain proposals voted on by the City Council.
Editor Phil Casaus said, “Our attorney’s belief is that you can quote The New Mexican and even identify it in text as a source, but I think our concern is the logo.”
Casaus said that for others, the mailer “has the opportunity to imply to the reader that that’s The New Mexican’s viewpoint on Ms. Vigil Coppler, and we haven’t endorsed in this race.”
The Webber campaign lied about Vigil Coppler’s position on masks, with Webber’s attorney Sascha Anderson claiming, “The campaign seeks to educate voters about Vigil Coppler’s vote against the City’s mask ordinance because we feel that if you vote no on something as simple as a mask ordinance you are not qualified to be Mayor.”
Vigil Coppler reiterated she voted against the mask ordinance because it was a “poorly written measure” that “had so many loopholes” and unenforceable provisions. For example, she said, the law allowed police to issue violators a written warning for a first offense. Vigil Coppler said the ordinance didn’t address how police would know whether someone had received a prior warning and that repeat violators wouldn’t admit to previous offenses to avoid a fine.”
“Instead of Alan Webber running on his own dismal record, he deliberately attempts to distort my City Council testimony on the mask legislation,” Vigil Coppler added.
Anderson refused to tell the New Mexican how much was spent by the Webber campaign on the fake news mailer and claimed it would be disclosed on the campaign’s next report. Election Day for all municipal races in New Mexico is less than a month away and early voting is in full-swing. Election Day is November 2.