In a race that was tighter than expected, incumbent U.S. Senator Tom Udall won re-election over his Republican challenger Allen Weh. Weh had gained steam over the last few weeks of the campaign but ended up on the losing end of a 55 to 45 contest.
Udall accepted victory in the Coral Ballroom at the Double Tree Hotel in Albuquerque. “Let me thank New Mexico tonight! What a night!” Udall exclaimed. “I’m very, very grateful for all of the hard work!”
Weh thanked his supporters at his campaign headquarters in Albuquerque. With his family by his side, Weh asked supporters to remain positive despite the outcome.
“Tomorrow I get up and the glass is still half full,” he said. ”I think we all want to have the same approach, we all want to get up and continue to strive and make this country better because that’s why we’re doing this.”
Late last week, the two sparred in a pair of long-anticipated debates. The candidates both ran on a platform rooted in foreign policy, immigration, veteran affairs, and health care. Udall had a strong backing from women and minority voters.
Udall has been a public servant in New Mexico for 16 years. He was first elected as the U.S. Senator for New Mexico in 2009. He began his political career as Attorney General in 1990 and re-elected in 1994. Udall was also elected to represent the Third Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives in 1998.
Weh lost in the gubernatorial primary to Susana Martinez in 2012. He also served as a member of the Republican National Committee from New Mexico. Currently Weh is a Colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve (Ret.). He owns and operates CSI Aviation in Albuquerque.
U.S. House District 1: Michelle Lujan-Grisham-D vs. Michael Frese-R
As expected, the incumbent Michelle Lujan-Grisham bested Michael Frese in the race for the Congressional District 1, winning 58 percent of the vote.
Lujan-Grisham celebrated at the New Mexico Democrats watch party in Downtown Albuquerque. She spoke to issues concerning farm to table food, healthcare and a heightened focus on special education.
“That’s the kind of work we’re going to keep doing together as New Mexicans… We’re not going to forget who we work for,” Lujan-Grisham said.
U.S. House District 2: Roxanne Lara-D vs. Steve Pearce-R
Steve Pearce retained the U.S. House District 2 seat, easily taking 65 percent of the vote and defeating Democratic challenger, Roxanne Lara.
U.S. House District 3: Ben Ray Lujan-D vs. Jefferson Byrd-R
Ben Ray Lujan defeated the Republican challenger Jefferson Byrd with 63 percent of the vote.