The Latest: New Mexico Democrat defends role in Senate
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The Latest on a three-way Senate candidate debate in New Mexico (all times local):
Democratic Sen. Martin Heinrich is defending his job performance and policies in a three-way debate from attacks by Libertarian and Republican rivals.
Republican candidate Mick Rich accused Heinrich at the Friday night debate of neglecting security along the U.S. border with Mexico and not doing enough for the state of New Mexico.
Libertarian Senate candidate and former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson said the federal deficit is being ignored and that Heinrich has been avoiding debate with him.
Heinrich struck back by ridiculing Johnson's dedication to skiing and observing that Rich's construction firm is over-budget and late in completing work on a public university project. Rich says his son now leads the construction firm and that the project is nearly complete.
Three candidates for a U.S. Senate seat in New Mexico are preparing for their first public debate after the start of early voting.
The televised debate is scheduled for Friday evening as incumbent Democratic Sen. Martin Heinrich seeks a second term in office, casting himself as a defender of endangered federal health care and retirement programs.
Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson is running for Senate under the Libertarian banner as an alternative to partisan extremism and a proponent of balancing the federal budget.
Albuquerque contractor and political newcomer Mick Rich is the Republican nominee. He has highlighted his steadfast support for Donald Trump, support for greater restrictions on immigration and opposition to abortion.
Johnson's failed 2016 bid for president won 9 percent of the vote in New Mexico.