Tags: US | New | Mexico | Governor

Republican Martinez Claims NM Governor's Seat

Wednesday, 03 Nov 2010 12:24 AM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Republican Susana Martinez has won the New Mexico governor's race, making history as the first Hispanic woman to become a state's chief executive.

The 51-year-old Martinez defeated Democrat Diane Denish to also become New Mexico's first female governor.

There was no incumbent in the race. Democratic Gov. Bill Richardson was barred from seeking re-election because he served two consecutive terms.

Martinez, a career prosecutor, made Richardson a central figure in the campaign. She ran as if the election was a referendum on the governor, whose popularity sank amid high unemployment and federal investigations into pay-to-play allegations.

Denish has served as lieutenant governor since 2003 and was Richardson's running mate in 2002 and 2006.

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