Otero County Democratic Chairwoman State Central Committee Member Disrupts Candidate Meet and Greet


Cloudcroft candidate for Mayor Richard Welch hosted a public meet and around 5:30 pm in Cloudcroft that was disrupted by two leaders of the Democratic Party of Otero County.

Mr. Welch is a Cloudcroft business owner and has been an outspoken opponent to street vendors on the main street of Cloudcroft. Along with other downtown merchants he has attended several community forums and voiced concerns with the present leadership and decisions that have made that he believes are not in the best interest of long term sustainability for the quality of life of Cloudcroft.

Outside of Cloudcroft those engaged in social media most directly Facebook may know Mr. Welch as the administrator of a local Facebook page Independent Voters of Otero County New Mexico.

Mr. Welch hosted a meet and greet with the candidate on Monday and the meeting was disrupted by two executive committee members of the Otero County Democratic Party. The party is presently dormant and under investigation by the New Mexico State Democratic Party and not allowed to act as a party in any official capacity in Otero County. Party Chairwoman Brianna Martinez and Party Candidate Selection Chair and State Central Committee Member Mathew Crecelius disrupted the meeting and led personal attacks against the candidate. Neither individual lives in Cloudcroft nor are registered to vote in the village election.

Mr. Welch claims the attack at his meet and greet was consistent with attacks he has recieved on social media by the two individuals in an attempt to squelch his concerns over Democratic Party leadership. Mr. Welch was a proponent of the candidate Monica Davalos for the Democratic Chair which ran in opposition of Brianna Martinez. Mathew Crecilus verbally assaulted Mr. Welch and claimed that the two of them "were going to take him down."

According to Mr. Welch they called him a liar and claimed, I spread false information." According to Mr. Welch, when pressed he couldn't provide any lies that I have said, nor provide proof of any false information."

There were 3 other people present when the verbal altercation began and they left not wanting to be in the presence of such negativity according to a source associated with the event.

Mr. Welch told AlamogordoTownNews.com he is seeking counsel on the situation and is considering filing a criminal complaint against the 2 leaders of the Otero County Democratic Party.

The Democratic Party of Otero County leadership has been decommissioned this municipal election cycle due to investigations into alleged bullying and hostile actions by its leadership against members and non-members.

The irony in the behavior of these two leaders is a statement in an email sent to leadership of the Otero County Democratic Party Chapter by the Executive Director of the Democrats of New Mexico. In a letter to leadership from Sean Ward, Executive Director of DPNM, he expressed a need for Mandatory Training on Roberts Rules of Order before the local party may be reactivated. In an email Dated Sept 26, 2023 he stated: "My hope is that the County Party will learn to use Robert's Rules of Order to resolve their conflicts rather than turning to physical aggression, bullying, and other bad behavior." - Sean Ward DPNM Executive Director.

Bad behavior, bullying, aggression, liable and social media attacks on opponents seems to be the standard operating procedure of the leadership of DPOC the last several months; thus the suspension by the state of their operations, pending investigations.

The unprofessional behavior, witnessed on Tuesday, at the Meet and Greet for a candidate for the office of Mayor of Cloudcroft. only reinforces the pattern of aggression, bullying and other bad behaviors by party officials as outlined by the state Executive Director of DPNM. Otero County deserves better than this!

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