2022 Governor's Race

The Libertarian Won’t Be A Spoiler in November

For those worried that the newly converted “Libertarian” Karen Bedonie will be a spoiler in New Mexico’s gubernatorial election this November, set your minds at ease.

It turns out even Libertarians, the “party” of freedom and civic duty, couldn’t find the motivation to make it to the polls this primary.

While turnout was low overall, at 25% statewide, Libertarian turnout was dismal. Only 7.3% of registered Libertarians cast a ballot in the governor’s race in the Tuesday primary, compared to 20.8% of Democrats and 28.1% of Republicans.

Bedonie has never been a Libertarian, which helps explain the low third-party turnout. She tossed her hat into the ring for the 2022 governor’s race and ran for New Mexico’s 3rd Congressional District in 2019 as a Republican — because she is a Republican. Rumor has it Bedonie failed to submit enough qualifying signatures to qualify for the GOP ballot and thus changed her party affiliation to Libertarian, which has a much lower signature requirement threshold.

Which makes sense. As Gary Johnson proved, the Libertarian Party is where Republicans go when they’re not popular enough to make it as a Republican.

She was for the GOP before she wasn’t.

Nevermind that this should be as illegal as re-identifying as female after you fail to qualify for competition in men’s sports.

New Mexican Libertarians saw the charade for what it was, which explains their reluctance to punch the Bedonie ticket at the voting booth.

The 1,041 votes cast for Bedonie in the governor’s race comes out to 0.4% of total votes cast in the gubernatorial election. While it’s generally true that Libertarians lean more Right than Left, a thousand votes likely won’t matter in the November general election.

Nobody is predicting a landslide. The race will be tough for the Republican and close no matter what the outcome. As of this writing, the governorship is ranked a “lean Democrat” race according to The Cook Political ReportSabato’s Crystal BallPoliticoRealClearPolitics, and Fox News. Only Inside Elections ranks the race as “likely Democrat.”

GOP nominee Mark Ronchetti will need to maximize Republican turnout and sway enough Independents and Democrats to keep Michelle Lujan Grisham from a second term. If he loses by a half of one percent of the voting populace because of Bedonie voters, we know who to blame for the next four years of MLG. 

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