In 2020, Republican Congresswoman Yvette Herrell decisively won back New Mexico’s Second Congressional District after far-left Democrat Xochitl Torres Small held the seat for two years following mysterious absentee ballots appearing just in time to swing the vote in her favor in 2018.
Now, as Rep. Herrell is working through her first year in Congress, Democrats at the Democrat Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) are eying 22 congressional seats they think they can flip in 2022. However, the Second District is not on it.
The District swings Republican by about six points, with President Trump winning the district in both 2016 and 2020 by around ten points.
With 2020 being a census year, New Mexico and all other states are constitutionally required to redraw their congressional seats, which will take effect by the 2022 election. New Mexico just enacted an independent redistricting commission in the 2021 Legislative Session, which will require a fairer process than the traditionally Democrat-dominated affair in the Legislature.
By staving off Democrat New Mexico House Speaker Brian Egolf’s threats to gerrymander the Second District out of Republican control, that appears unlikely now that a fair process will be in place.
But even if Egolf did get his way to gerrymander the 2nd District to possibly favor Democrats, according to FiveThirtyEight’s “Atlas of Redistricting,” the new less Republican district would still have a 76.9% chance of being represented by a Republican. With that change, however, Republicans would have an almost 200% increased chance of winning back New Mexico’s 3rd Congressional District, currently represented by far-left Democrat Rep. Teresa Leger de Fernandez.
The move by the DCCC not to put New Mexico’s Second District on their “target list” gives more confidence to voters of the Second District that it will remain in Republican hands, although former Democrat Rep. Torres Small is taking out her bitter loss of the seat after just one term by joining a PAC aimed at taking out Republicans from Congress.
Torres Small’s PAC is made up of failed Democrat cognressional candidates and former members and calls itself “Shield PAC.” It claims to combat Republican “lies,” fear-mongering that if vulnerable Democrats don’t keep their seats in Congress, “the seditionist, Trump-loving GOP will take over the House.” These extreme attacks from a supposed “moderate” Democrat PAC show that these calls for moderation appear to be merely smoke and mirrors.
Despite the bitterness spewing forth from Democrats desperate to get back in Congress by hook or by crook, Herrell is not in hot water just yet, with Washington, D.C. Democrats prioritizing other districts than hers to focus on in the 2022 midterms.