SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — An election-year battle for control of the New Mexico Legislature is under way and the political middle ground is under siege in several races in Tuesday's primary contests.
With all seats in the Democratic-controlled Legislature up for grabs in this year's primary and general elections, Republicans hope to make gains to give GOP Gov. Susana Martinez a better chance of advancing her policies.
The primary features contested races for 43 House and Senate seats. Two dozen incumbents face opponents. Some seats are open because incumbents decided to retire or run for another office.
In several Senate races, there's a sharp ideological clash as moderate Democratic incumbents, including John Arthur Smith of Deming and Phil Griego of San Jose, face opponents backed by unions, environmentalists and other liberal-leaning interest groups.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.