1 US Sen. Tom Udall, D-NM
Attempts to get US Sen. Tom Udall to talk smack about beating Gov. Bill Richardson out as Best New Mexico Politician for 2009 were, as expected, a dismal failure. Well, we knew better. In his five terms in the US House, Udall proved repeatedly that he likes to take the high ground and stick to the issues.

So far, that seems to be the same approach Udall is bringing to the US Senate as a freshman, after winning a contested general election race last November against former US Rep. Steve Pearce to replace retiring longtime Republican US Sen. Pete Domenici. In the Senate, Udall tells SFR, he and colleagues are “focusing on the issues that are front and center back here: veterans, health care, energy, global warming. We have a very, very busy July with all of these issues.”

As for his personal transition, Udall says “it got much better when we moved out of the basement. We were in the basement for three months and now we’re in our permanent offices in the Hart [Senate Office] Building.” When it comes to the general tenor of the new administration, Udall says he believes “people are very upbeat about the Obama administration. He’s very disciplined and he’s sticking to the task and he’s doing a very good job of representing the country.”

As for how people—specifically our readers—feel about Udall, he says he’s “flattered your readership would select me. It does reflect we’re doing a good job. We’re continuing to do the right thing.”

Gov. Bill Richardson, Democrat, governor.state.nm.us

US Sen. Jeff Bingaman, D-NM, bingaman.senate.gov