When someone shot Linda Lopez’s house, the truth is: she didn’t even know it, and she thereLopez lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The shooting happened on January 3rd. That night she stayed up late with her children and they all went to bed. It was around 1 a.m. when Lopez heard her bangs. And I thought she knew what it was: fireworks.
Lopez’s 10-year-old daughter, Cherish, comes into her room. Cherish had her own theory as to what had awakened her. Did she think maybe a spider fell on her face? They had spiders before. She felt something, she knew it all too well. “She said she felt sand and dirt on her face and nose,” Lopez said. I said, “Sweetheart, maybe Mom needs to clean the fan on the bed.” ”
After that they went back to sleep.
“At about 6:30 at 7:04 I woke up and started turning on the light in the bathroom. I looked towards the bed and saw what happened to the wall. The wall above the bed. And if you look to the left, there was a hole in the closet door.There were 12 bullet holes in total.My daughter’s room is next to mine.The trajectory of the bullet was , I might have grazed her head if she had been up.”
After seeing the damage inside, Lopez donned a robe and slippers and stepped forward. At that time, the garage was also littered with bullets. So she took out her cell phone and asked for her help. Lopez works as a state senator, so she knew how to call the police chief. “Within half an hour the police came and the children were still asleep and I had to wake them up,” she said.
Lopez has been in politics for almost 30 years. I asked her at what point it crossed her mind that what happened could have been her political motives. “I’ve had threats over the years, maybe by email, or someone will leave a message on my home phone number. But I’ve never gotten this high,” Lopez said. Told. “I distinctly remember talking to Chief Medina that morning and he said, ‘Well, you are his third.’ Two county commissioners were also shot in their homes. .”
On Thursday’s episode of What Next, I spoke to Linda Lopez about how a series of brazen, partisan attacks in New Mexico are making us rethink what it means to work across the aisle. Our conversation has been condensed and edited for clarity.
Mary Harris: As soon as possible state Sen. Linda Lopez noticed that other politicians had been attacked and began contacting them. Soon she realized she wasn’t the three Democrats who had been shot.; it was fourAnd for a while no one knew exactly why. But soon that changed. Final, Police eventually pinpointed the attack to a man named Solomon Bae.Hmma, who recently ran for state H.Use of R.As Representative, Republican, and lost.baeHmma refused to admit and took to twitter Alleging that the election was rigged.
Authorities now say PeHmmFour men hired to carry out these shootings, Aimed at local Democrats. In addition to Lopez and his two county commissioners, sTate rA representative named Javier MartMenez was also attacked at home.Lopez was hit in the end andHmmAllegedly attended the shooting. Arrested at J.. 16. When Solomon Peña was arrested, you surprised?
Linda Lopez: I just appreciate it. I appreciate that someone can and will be held accountable for what happened. In our county board, I understand that because our county board is the body that certifies the election results. But where do you come from in this picture? why me? why my family
worldyou told my producer that fundamentally you You knew him because he had a big sign near your house. That was kind of the beginning and the end.
Yeah, that’s it. There is one main street that crosses the Rio Grande from the west side of Albuquerque to the east side. And you can see the big billboard for Solomon Peña running through the House district, which I see every day. The closest you’ll ever get to meeting Mr. Peña or finding out who he is. Of course, he was playing against Rep. Miguel Garcia. But the Senate district that Mr. Peña lives in is not my Senate district. So I’ve been trying to put together why I am.
i feel like peiHmma was a kind of distinctive candidate. He calls himself the King of MAGA, and his candidacy was controversial enough that other Democrats took notice.. Miguel Garcia tried to make it soHmmIf he won the election, a could not serve. So he seemed to be on people’s radar.
Most of us knew the news when Rep. Garcia sued Peña in court to remove him from the ballot. It was then that his background became more widely known.
baeHmma’s background was controversial for many reasons. He claimed he was present at the January Capitol riot.. For example, 6. But it’s not just that he was a supporter of Donald Trump.; He also had an extensive criminal record. He spent seven years in prison for a string of robberies at a large retail store. had argued that he should have been disqualified from service.And in his district, the critic Also He was an overly aggressive campaigner, urging voters to change their party affiliation and vote for him.HmmI was able to stay in the race.
What I have seen over the years is that judges are very reluctant to remove someone from the ballot.
FinallyHmmlost the legislative race by a considerable margin, About 50 points.
right. The district in which he was running as a Republican is a solid Democratic district. Frankly, I think he already knew what the outcome would be.
One of the strange things for me is right after he was allegedly involved in the shooting at your house.Solomon Peña Elected to leadership position in the County Republican Party—a township head.
yes. Our county is divided into wards. And in certain Republican wards, he was elected. I hope the Republicans in Bernalillo County fire him at this point. They’re waiting until he’s proven guilty. It should automatically be removed as a ward chair. not decided. Let’s see what they are actually trying to do.
Did a Republican colleague contact you and tell you about your experience?
I have several members of Congress who have reached out to me and shared their disgust with what happened. And I really appreciate the outreach that actually took place. I know Senate Republicans held press conferences and mentioned something to the effect of this not being asked for. But that’s about it for now.
have you thought of saying, favorite, “Thank you for your comment. What are you going to do now?”
This is part of the conversation at the national level. This happened here in New Mexico, yes, but it happened elsewhere in the country. See Governor of Michigan. You can see the Secretary of State here in New Mexico being threatened. You can see other secretaries of state being intimidated for this whole election naysayer issue. And that’s sort of what happened with the January 6th Rebellion. It’s a bigger problem across the country. It’s not just localized here in New Mexico. It’s a bigger deal. And I truly believe that it is an underlying issue that protects our democracy. I also pledge to uphold the Constitution of the United States. And apparently the Republican Party has a problem. And if the public can’t handle it, what are we going to do at the local level?
I have this detail almost An attack on her home that Linda Lopez can’t shake.it’s about how Simple It should have made things worse.Authorities are currently investigating whether Solomon PeHmmHe came to Lopez’s house himself because he thought the previous shootings weren’t violent enough.he brought it himself automatic weapon.
I’m not very knowledgeable about guns, but he essentially had a gun with a huge magazine attached and it got stuck while he was shooting at our house. It would have been a completely different story.
T.His details are so neatly connected to her work that they last.—wshe’s not done yet.
I have introduced and co-sponsored legislation in the past on reducing bump stock and all that stuff.
gun control law.
We cannot go on like this. It’s the fashion in this country. The final response must be to the point where guns cannot or should not be used. For me too, someone came to me and said, Then you can protect yourself. ’ And it’s kind of a mantra. And I said, “No, I’m not going to do that.” There are other ways. I believe we can have a dialogue. But with shootings on the rise, we must arm ourselves to protect ourselves, our families, and our property. There is a complete radicalization of the gun. Yes, the Constitution guarantees us that, but how far? It happened very close to home, so I will learn more as time goes on.
Given all this, do you approach your work any differently now?, Especially since what happened is tied to your job.
I keep my eyes open and look behind me to see where the kids are and they know where I am. My neighbors too — have noticed the changes we’re all checking in. And we believe part of this tactic is also bringing fear into the mix, so that’s the most important thing we can do And fear has no place in my house. Fear is not allowed in our community. They’re not going to win it. If it was part of the intentions of Mr. Peña and his associates, or anyone else implicated in this action that was taking place in our community, fear will not prevail.
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are you sleeping at home again?
Oh yes. I try to keep life as normal as possible for my family because I don’t want fear to rule me.
What was the most difficult question your daughter asked you?
Two of them. She asked, “Why us, mother?” And her second word, which she repeats, is, “I am very lucky.” And because when a 10-year-old can do that, her 10-year-olds in my world should be a little happier, with so many other things to think about. Question, it gives me a challenge as a mother to try and find out how we handle this. Still in process. It will take some time. It won’t end tomorrow. It won’t end next week. This will take some time. But we get there.we will get there.