On Thursday, the Associated Press first reported that Brian Colón, a perennial candidate for just about every office in New Mexico, announced he would be running for New Mexico attorney general after serving one term in elected office as the state auditor.
According to the AP, “Colón sees the campaign as an opportunity to ‘take the next step,’ saying his motivation is rooted in his experience growing up in New Mexico and his desire to serve his community. He recalled the struggle of being poor and having to take on the role of caring for his mother and siblings when his father died at a young age.”
Colón would be following in the career path of the current attorney general and his former law firm colleague, Hector Balderas, who mysteriously passed up the opportunity to run for the U.S. Senate in 2022, which he was expected to do. Balderas was the state auditor before becoming attorney general.
After a stint as Democrat Party of New Mexico chair, Colón ran a failed campaign for lieutenant governor in 2010, then ran a failed campaign for Albuquerque mayor, being beat by then-state auditor Tim Keller.
In the state’s history, the auditor’s office has been used as less of a regulatory agency for accountability than for boosting politicians’ political careers. In recent history, the auditor’s office has been known for corruption, notably with then-auditor Robert E. Vigil (D) and the state treasurer being indicted on 28 counts of extortion, money laundering, and racketeering by a federal jury.
Other than generalities about promoting “prosperous” and “safe” communities, it is unknown what platform Colón plans on running on. Another candidate, Albuquerque-area district attorney Raúl Torrez is also a possible contender for the position.
According to the New Mexico Secretary of State, Colón has $366,738.19 cash on hand, which gives him a leg up in fundraising over other candidates. Republicans have held the attorney general’s office three times in the state’s history. Still, if the GOP fields a viable candidate in 2022, the race could very well swing to the Republican column due to it being a midterm with a Democrat sitting in the White House.