GOP rips Candelaria as "despicable" and "self-important." Candelaria apologizes to cops
The New Mexico Republican Party on Friday ripped State Sen. Jacob Candelaria, D-ABQ, for berating and threatening State Police officers who came to his house on Sunday to investigate a threatening phone call he had received. A GOP press release called Candelaria arrogant, self-important and childish for threatening the cops who had come to help him.
And, also on Friday, Candelaria sent an apology to blogger Joe Monahan. In the apology, Candelaria said, "I simply did not treat the officers who came to our house with the necessary respect or decorum ... I apologize fully and unequivocally to each of the officers who were carrying out their duties professionally and who put their safety on the line every day." Monahan gave us permission to republish Candelaria's apology.
Following are the full texts of the GOP's news release and Candelaria's apology.
ELITIST DEMOCRATIC LAWMAKER DISPLAYS HOSTILE, ARROGANT CONDUCT UNBECOMING OF A PUBLIC SERVANTALBUQUERQUE, OCTOBER 30 — The despicable behavior of a Democratic State Senator last weekend during an encounter with State Police demonstrates the worst when it comes to expectations of our New Mexico lawmakers.
District 26 Senator Jacob Candeleria had called State Police to his apartment to help him after he received a threatening phone call, but when officers arrived, Candeleria berated them for how they interpreted the call. The officers were simply performing their duty by collecting information about the call.During the discussion with officers, Candeleria burst into a tirade of abuse, constantly bragging that he was a senator and demanding respect because of his government position. He aired his “superiority” of being a state senator multiple times in an arrogant way.
During his tirade, Candeleria even threatened to call the governor to punish the helpful officers. Senator Candeleria disrespected State Police. It’s unspeakable that a public servant would treat law enforcement in this disrespectful manner, especially given his position.
.What does this say about this Democratic incumbent? Is this the kind of lawmaker we want representing New Mexicans—insulting and berating police?And here’s the touch of irony: Democrats nationwide have called for defunding the police, but now the Senator is seeking special privileges for lawmakers! Candeleria wants to make police more responsive to threats against elected officials, despite him repelling from his home the very people he asked to help him. No state lawmaker should get special privileges above the constituents they represent.
“This is the kind of hypocritical behavior that makes voters lose faith in their elected leaders, who are supposed to serve them—not serve themselves,” said Republican Party of New Mexico Chairman Steve Pearce. “All law enforcers must receive respect–period. They are here to serve and protect. No one is above the law in New Mexico. Senator Candeleria’s childish and self-important behavior is unbecoming of the New Mexico Senate—a body meant to be mature and deliberative. He doesn’t deserve the honor of serving in any office of public trust. Senator Candeleria doesn’t deserve your vote on Tuesday to return to the Roundhouse.”
Between midnight and 1 a.m. on October 25, my family received three anonymous phone calls at our home in quick succession, threatening violence against my family and me because of my political views, my race, and my sexual orientation. I reported the calls to law enforcement immediately. We deemed one of the callers, who threatened to “take” me “out one way or another,” to be quite serious. As it turns out, at about 10:00 am, a cursory background check done by my law firm’s private investigator yielded strong evidence that the caller who made the most direct threat had a history of violence and an open warrant for his arrest.
My private investigator, who is a former member of the United States Secret Service, advised us at that time that the threat level was escalated and that the caller needed to be found, without delay. I immediately again called the police because I was terrified for the safety of my new husband and myself. If you’ve felt that visceral fear for your family, I am so sorry because I do not wish that upon anyone. In the hours that followed, I was not going to stop until my family was safe. I would and will always do anything to protect the man I love.
When the state police arrived later that afternoon, I simply did not treat the officers who came to our house with the necessary respect or decorum. Let me be clear, I was wrong to redirect the terror and frustration we were experiencing on those individual officers. I apologize fully and unequivocally to each of the officers who were carrying out their duties professionally and who put their safety on the line every day.
As I did later that same night, I thank them for their ongoing committed service to this state. Moving forward, we all need to hold those accountable who are quick to resort to violence toward those who have differing political views, or on the basis of their race, ethnicity or sexual orientation. Our state, nor our country, can progress without a commitment to civil discourse. I commit here and now to actively doing my part.