Republican Rep. Yvette Herrell faces off against Democrat Gabriel Vasquez in New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District election

Yvette Herrell
Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images;Insider
  • Rep. Yvette Herrell is running against Democrat Gabriel Vasquez in New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District.
  • The 2nd District encompasses western portions of of Albuquerque, the largest city in New Mexico.
  • Herrell is one of four Native Americans serving in Congress.

Republican New Mexico Rep. Yvette Herrell faces off against Democrat Gabriel Vasquez in New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District.

Polls close in the state at 7 p.m. local time, or 9 p.m. EST.

New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District candidates

Herrell, a Cherokee, joined the ranks of the very few Native Americans in Congress following her victory in 2020. She is the first Native American Republican woman elected to the US House.

The 58-year-old New Mexico native ran for the seat in 2018, but was narrowly defeated by her opponent, Democratic attorney and former Rep. Xochitl Torres Small. Herrell defeated Small two years later.

Prior to her time in Congress, Herrell represented New Mexico’s 51st District for four terms in the New Mexico House of Representatives.

Vasquez, Herrell’s challenger, is an outgoing Las Cruces city councilor. He defeated his opponent by a wide margin in the Democratic primary, bringing in more than two-thirds of the vote. Prior to running for Congress, Vasquez worked for US Sen. Martin Heinrich in southern New Mexico.

He is endorsed by President Joe Biden.

Voting history for New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District

New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District encompasses the city of Las Cruces, the second largest city in the state, and western portions of Albuquerque, the largest.

Former President Donald Trump had a 12 percentage point margin of victory over Biden under the district’s previous boundaries in 2020 before it was redrawn to concede portions of the northeast in redistricting following the 2020 Census, changing its political leaning from Republican to Democratic.

Previously, the district spanned the entire southern portion of New Mexico, from one state line to the next.

The money race

According to OpenSecrets, Herrell has raised $3.9 million, spent $3.3 million, and has $683,057 of cash on hand, as of October 19. Her opponent, Vasquez, has raised $3.2 million, spent $2.9 million, and has $348,172 of cash still left to spend, as of October 19.

As of early November, super PACs, national party committees, and other non-candidate committees had combined to spend about $13.4 million to advocate for or against candidates in this race, including during the primaries.

What experts say

The race between Herrell and Vasquez is rated as a “toss-up” by Inside Elections, a “toss-up” by The Cook Political Report, and “leans Republican” by Sabato’s Crystal Ball at the University of Virginia Center for Politics.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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