In Bernalillo County, for example, there are choices for Sheriff: the incumbent, Manuel Gonzales and challenger, Lou Golson. Both men are law enforcement veterans with years of experience, but what are the differences? Here are a few:
Respecting Voters: Lou Golson has been accessible to voters during the campaign, telling the Albuquerque Journal, “The people need to have their questions answered. They are the ones who put us into office… they deserve our time.” Manual Gonzales, on the other hand, refused a televised debate as a “campaign strategy” saying, “The public knows exactly where I stand…I have no doubts that I’ll be re-elected.”
Performance/Background: Lou Golson, who survived being shot four times in the line of duty after stopping a suspected drunk driver, was recognized as an NMBC Hero in 2015 and has had no allegations of misconduct arise during the campaign. As Sheriff, Manuel Gonzales has had several controversial issues since being elected: HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE are a few examples.
Position on Accountability: Lou Golson says he would implement body cameras for Bernalillo County Sheriff Deputies to increase transparency and accountability. Manual Gonzales has (repeatedly) refused requests from the public and other County elected officials to have Deputies wear body cameras. NMBC believes that many, if not all of the excessive force allegations that are pending under Sheriff Gonzales’ watch, could have been resolved if body cameras were being used. More on this issue HERE.
Respectfulness, accessibility, solid performance, and transparency are all important issues. NMBC encourages voters in Bernalillo County and around the state to take a hard look at those who want to serve the community in an elected law enforcement position.