In fact, Shannan Calland, campaign manager for Bernalillo County Sheriff Manny Gonzales, follows all four of the founding members of The Squad — Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (“AOC”), Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, and Rashida Tlaib — a group of U.S. Congresswomen known for being among the most far-Left representatives in the House of Representatives.
While many people on Twitter will claim “retweets do not equal endorsements” in their bio, Calland doesn’t shy from her activist Leftism.
In January, Calland called for impeaching President Trump, accusing him of inciting a civil war and “terrorising (sic) our democracy.”
According to the City of Montebello (California), website, Calland is a commissioner on the Culture & Recreation Commission there. No public records could be found tying Calland to New Mexico.
While Calland does follow Gonzales and recently liked one of his campaign posts, her social media presence is otherwise unrelated to New Mexico, and her activity on the platform is a stark contrast to the “Conservative Democrat” image Gonzales has tried to portray in his bid for Albuquerque mayor.
“Tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are.”
In March, before an actual Republican entered the race, Gonzales was the go-to candidate for right-of-center Duke City residents. The quiet South Valley Democrat’s appeal — beyond simply not being Tim Keller — was his tough-on-crime stance, which was magnified in July 2020 when Gonzales went to the White House for a photo opp with the president as part of “Operation Legend,” a joint effort of federal, state, and local law enforcement to fight violent crime. (Biden ended Operation Legend soon after taking office January 20, 2021.)
For the record, Gonzales’ crime cred is commendable. He has immersed himself in the communities most affected by crime, worked directly with local residents, and not only supported but heralded his deputies for professionally executing their duties. He pushed back on red flag laws, resisted deputy lapel cameras, and fought use-of-force cases against the county.
Which, according to his opponent, is exactly why he should stay in his current role.
“After all of the trouble that Sheriff Manny has had with his fraudulent signatures for public funding, he should just stay sheriff,” Republican mayoral candidate Eddy Aragon told The Conservative New Mexican Saturday. “He’s still on the job and I am not sure how he can continue to do a decent job as sheriff with the crime crisis while dealing with his own campaign crisis. We need him to keep focused on crime during this record breaking year.”
“Perhaps after he’s termed out at the end of next year he could apply to work with our APD.”— Republican mayoral candidate Eddy Aragon
Other than crime and crime-adjacent issues like sanctuary cities, bail reform, and DOJ meddling in local law enforcement, Gonzales’ campaign hasn’t been very loud about other issues facing the city.
His responses to questions during the first mayoral debate were short, canned, and vague. And his campaign website does not have an “Issues” section, leaving voters (and media outlets like The Conservative New Mexican, whose request for an interview went unanswered) to speculate.
Which is why Gonzales’ selection of a California Liberal for his campaign manager is so revealing. As the famous saying goes, “Tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are.”
Beyond her Leftwing positions, Calland’s former consulting firm, The SHC Consulting Group, appears to have caught the attention of California officials after her partner, Montebello City Councilwoman Vivian Romero, paid her $26,000 in consultancy fees, according to a September 2018 news article. (Romero was also elected Montebello’s first openly-gay mayor in 2016, according to The Whittier Daily.)
“Despite SHC’s lack of social media and professional presence, two campaign committees formed by Calland’s partner Vivian Romero — Romero for Montebello City Council and Romero for Senate 2018-have paid Calland over $26,000.
And one recent payment to Calland will raise eyebrows in the District Attorney’s money laundering unit: in August of this year Romero paid Calland, who’s own company does not have a website, $1,500 for ‘information technology costs (internet and email) and Website design and set-up.’ ”— Los Cerritos News, September, 29, 2018
According to CorporationWiki, “Shannan Calland has been associated with one company” — as previous president for The SHC Consulting Group . “The company was incorporated in California three years ago and is no longer active.”
Categories: 2021 ABQ Mayoral Race