During his time as U.S. Attorney, Martinez oversaw the U.S. Department of Justice's effort to reform the Albuquerque Police Department.
Damon Martinez, former U.S. Attorney for New Mexico, said Monday that he is running for Congress in the state’s 1’st Congressional District.
Martinez, who served as U.S. attorney from 2014 through early this year, joins an already crowded Democratic field for the seat that is being vacated by Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham, who is running for governor.
“As a 10th generation New Mexican, I can’t sit back and just watch President Trump attack our New Mexico values. It was an honor to be selected by President Obama to serve as the U.S. Attorney in my home state, and despite President Trump asking for my resignation, I am not done serving,” Martinez said in announcing his candidacy.
Martinez was chosen by President Barack Obama in 2014 to be the 45th U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico. In March, he along with 45 other U.S. attorneys from across the country were asked to resign by President Trump.
The Trump administration has yet to name Martinez’s replacement.
“I have unfinished business for the people of New Mexico,” Martinez said. “When I was forced out by President Trump our office was working on issues critical to New Mexicans and our country, from fighting the heroin and opioid crisis in the state, to improving lives in Indian country, combating sexual assault and protecting our national security interests in our national labs. I will continue to fight in Washington to improve the lives of all those in New Mexico.”
During his time as U.S. Attorney, Martinez oversaw the U.S. Department of Justice’s effort to reform the Albuquerque Police Department.
The Democratic race for the seat is already crowded. Candidates include former state Democratic Party Chairwoman Debra Haaland, Albuquerque City Councilor Pat Davis, physicist Dennis Dinge, Edgewood Mayor Pro Tem John Abrams, former law professor Antoinette Sedillo Lopez and Damian Lara, president of the New Mexico Hispanic Bar Association.
On the Republican side, former state representative Janice Arnold Jones has announced for the seat.
Martinez has served in both the U.S. Army Reserves and the New Mexico National Guard since August 2002 after joining in response to the events of 9/11. He was mobilized in 2008 and deployed to Sanai Egypt in 2012. Martinez is an Albuquerque native and graduate of St. Pius X High School. He holds two Bachelor of Arts degrees, a Juris Doctor and Master of Business Administration from the University of New Mexico.
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