Denish airs critical TV ad

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Democratic candidate for governor went on the attack against Republican candidate Susana Martinez

By Barry Massey

SANTA FE — Democratic gubernatorial nominee Diane Denish went on the attack Thursday with a television ad criticizing GOP candidate Susana Martinez’s record as a prosecutor.

Denish’s ad came quickly after Tuesday’s primary election and signaled that New Mexicans will see a hard-hitting campaign in the race for governor.

Martinez has been the district attorney in the 3rd Judicial District, which covers Dona Ana County, since 1997.

The ad said Martinez had the lowest conviction rate for murder cases of any district attorney during the past decade.

“Susana Martinez won the Republican nomination with sound bites and empty promises, but in reality she’s been a failed district attorney who doesn’t deserve a promotion,” Denish campaign spokesman Chris Cervini said in a statement.

Martinez called the ad a “patently false attack against my record.”

The Denish campaign used state court data to calculate conviction rates for felony homicide cases — murder and manslaughter — handled by the state’s 13 district attorneys in the 1999-2009 fiscal years.

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