ALBUQUERQUE — New Mexico Working Families Party (NMWFP) celebrated a major milestone Friday as it was officially approved by the Secretary of State as a minor party in New Mexico.
NMWFP collected more than 6,000 signatures and submitted party rules to become a minor party.
Since its launch in the state in 2016, NMWFP has been an independent, progressive organization working on local policy and electoral campaigns. Minor party status will allow them to have their own ballot line in the general election.
Organizers say the NMWFP is not a “spoiler” party or a protest vote. Instead, minor party status is the first step in building a path for fusion voting in New Mexico, a system where multiple political parties can endorse the same candidate on the general election ballot.
The new party also will run candidates in open seats, and plans to push for allowing minor party members to vote in major party primaries.
“We want bold leaders who aren’t afraid to take on entrenched special interests,” said Eric Griego, state director of NMWFP and one of the party’s organizers. “Minor party status will allow Working Families to challenge entrenched incumbents who are out of step with core progressive values.”
“Official recognition as a minor party means a working families agenda will likely be more successful in New Mexico,” said OLE Executive Director Andrea Serrano and one of the party’s officers in New Mexico. “We will continue to work closely with our progressive allies inside and outside the Democratic party to elect candidates at all levels who reflect our core values.”
Before receiving minor party status, NMWFP had several major wins in the June 2 Democratic Primary Election, where they put significant resources into defeating entrenched Democratic incumbents. They included: Leo Jaramillo in Senate District 5, Siah Hemphill Correa in Senate District 28, Pam Cordova in Senate District 30, Neomi Martinez-Parra in Senate District 35 and Carrie Hamblen in Senate District 38.
Despite its relatively recent arrival to the state’s progressive political scene, NWMFP has established itself as a formidable challenge to the status quo in the Democratic party. By supporting candidates who are engaging voters with a compelling working families agenda, challenging powerful Democrats, and holding elected officials at all levels accountable, NMWFP has given the progressive wing of the Democratic party a stronger and more effective voice.