SECRETARY OF STATE’S OFFICE NEWS
Following Deb Haaland’s confirmation as Interior Secretary and the subsequent resignation of her congressional seat yesterday, New Mexico Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver will issue the special election proclamation for Congressional District 1 tomorrow, which will set Tuesday, June 1, 2021 as Election Day.
“Deb Haaland’s historic confirmation as the nation’s first Native American cabinet secretary is a proud moment for all New Mexicans, but it also kicks off another important election cycle of which every eligible voter in Congressional District 1 should be aware,” said Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver. “Now that Election Day is set, I encourage anyone interested in seeking the office to familiarize themselves with the laws and procedures outlined in the Election Code. I also encourage every eligible voter in CD1 to register to vote or update your voter registration, which can be done easily at NMVOTE.ORG.”
New Mexico’s Congressional District 1 encompasses all of Torrance County, most of Bernalillo County, and parts of Sandoval, Santa Fe, and Valencia Counties. Pursuant to New Mexico law, Secretary Toulouse Oliver is required to issue the election proclamation within ten days of receiving the elected official’s letter of resignation. The election must then be held between seventy-seven and ninety-one days after the vacancy occurs.
These are some of the important procedures and deadlines that govern the administration of the special election:
- Once the proclamation is issued:
- Prescribed forms will be available for prospective candidates on the Secretary of State’s website (Declaration of Candidacy/Declaration of Intent to Become a Write-In Candidate; petition templates for independent candidates; etc).
- Each qualified political party may nominate a candidate to fill the vacancy, in the manner provided by the rules of that party.
- Independent candidates may begin circulating nominating petitions. Links to download English and Spanish versions of the nominating petitions can be found on the Secretary of State’s website.
- Within five days of the proclamation being issued, the Secretary of State shall certify the proclamation to each county clerk with precincts located in the United States representative district in which the vacancy exists.
- Fifty-six days before the special election, Declarations of Candidacy, Declarations of Intent to Be A Write-In Candidate and Nominating Petitions (if required), must be filed with the proper filing officer (i.e. Secretary of State).
- Items required to qualify for this position must be filed in-person, no later than 5:00pm on this date, otherwise known as “Candidate Filing Day.” Items cannot be pre-filed or filed at a later time.
- Forty-five days before the special election, Military and overseas voters shall be mailed ballots, in accordance with the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act.
- Twenty-eight days before the special election, county clerks can begin to mail a ballot to voters who have requested an absentee ballot (in a timely fashion) and who are eligible to participate in the election (i.e. voter resides within the Congressional District).
More information about the special election, including guides for prospective candidates, can be found on the Secretary of State’s website here.