King Supports Allowing Write-In Candidate

New Mexico – Attorney General Gary King backs a decision by the secretary of state to allow a write-in candidate for governor without a running mate.

King's office said that Secretary of State Mary Herrera "has not done anything illegal" in permitting Kenneth A. Gomez of Bloomfield as a write-in candidate.

Herrera has come under criticism from her Republican opponent, Dianna Duran, and several county clerks.

Assistant Attorney General Tania Maestas said the state Constitution does not specifically prohibit a write-in candidate for governor and the state's ballots are "neither blatantly illegal nor unconstitutional." Herrera's office released the letter on Thursday.

Critics of Herrera's decision point to a constitutional provision that says the governor and lieutenant governor shall be elected jointly.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.