Begaye working to unseat Pacheco

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Begaye working to unseat Pacheco

On a clear Saturday morning, Catherine Begaye and her campaign team are gearing up to make their third round of door-to-door visits in Rio Rancho.

A Democrat running against a Republican incumbent in the New Mexico House of Representatives, Begaye begins knocking on the doors of people categorized as undecided voters.

“I want voters to know I’m not just a person who is sending out flyers and saying ‘that should take care of it,” she said. “I’m really interested in what’s important to you- the voter.” Begaye said.

Begaye is running against Paul A. Pacheco Nov. 4 for the House District 23 seat.

When asked about Begaye, her campaign manager Bharat Krishnan says, “It’s been really nice. When I got here — she’s a first time candidate — she literally had $100.00 in her bank account.”

Since then, Begaye has added to her campaign coffers.

“Begaye has raised almost $100,000 total during this campaign from over 300 donors. For this last finance report, Catherine had 22 individual donors in-district while Paul Pacheco had zero.” Krishnan said.

District 23 covers areas along Coors and Montano, and extends up to Corrales. The largest area of the district is in Corrales, while also covering parts of Rio Rancho. This particular race is one of several that political insiders are watching to see if Republicans can gain control of the New Mexico House. The current make up is 37 Democrats and 33 Republicans.

Begaye graduated from the University of New Mexico in 2000 with a bachelor’s degree in biology and a minor in sociology. She then earned her juris doctorate in 2004, also from UNM. Begaye now owns a law firm in Albuquerque.

She has done extensive work with CYFD, and other programs that help children and their families. Education is one of her most prominent platforms because she has worked so closely with children in her practice.

“We need to put more money into early childhood education- kindergarten through third grade. They know their letters, if they know their numbers, if they can identify an apple, you know, the basics,” Begaye said.

Back in the Rio Rancho neighborhood, Begaye asked a resident what some of the most important issues are to him. He indicated that he has become concerned with the local economy.

“We are at the bottom of every list. And we – I think you and me both – are not proud to be there. We need to find a way to get ourselves back up there” Begaye said.

As she does with most encounters, she follows up her conversation by saying, “I would like to count on your vote in November.”

Although there is the occasional ‘no thank you’ or refusal to talk, Begaye says the response to her door-to-door canvassing has been largely positive.

Voters like to be able to put a name to a face and meet the candidate, she said.

“How often do you get someone coming to your door and saying ‘I want you to vote for me’? It’s good to have volunteers, because then people know I have support. But at the same time, if somebody came to my door, I would drill them like crazy too.”[/text_output][share title=”Share this Post” facebook=”true” twitter=”true” google_plus=”true” linkedin=”true” pinterest=”true”][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/3″][image type=”none” float=”none” info=”none” info_place=”top” info_trigger=”hover” src=”3400″][text_output]