- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 5, 2014

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - Santa Fe voters have chosen former state Democratic Party Chairman Javier Gonzales over two opponents to serve as mayor of the northern New Mexico city for the next four years.

Unofficial results showed Gonzales had just under 7,400 votes in Tuesday’s election, compared with just under 4,900 for City Councilor Patti Bushee and nearly 4,800 for Councilor Bill Dimas.

A mob of cheering supporters greeted Gonzales, his two young daughters and other family members when they walked into a packed hotel ballroom Tuesday night, the Santa Fe New Mexican reported (https://bit.ly/1gQj9Lo).

“This campaign was never about me. It was about us,” he told the crowd.

Gonzales, 47, said the race was won by a grass-roots campaign that brought together a cross section of the city. The race was also the city’s first mayoral contest in which the campaigns were publicly funded.

Gonzales, a vice president of a commercial real estate firm, also made history as the city’s first openly gay mayor. He will preside over a City Council on which two of the eight members are openly gay women - Bushee and newly elected Signe Lindell.

Gonzales, who is replacing outgoing Mayor David Coss, led in all four of the city’s council districts, including the north-side district that Bushee has represented for the past 20 years as a city councilor.

Gonzales was helped by business and political contacts built up over a career that started two decades ago as a county commissioner. His campaign also included more than 70 house parties and several community conversations that drew crowds.

Opponents criticized Gonzales, saying his publicly financed campaign had the help of outside groups.

Voters also re-elected Councilors Ron Trujillo and Carmichael Dominguez and Lindell and Joe Maestas to council seats.

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Information from: The Santa Fe New Mexican, https://www.sfnewmexican.com

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