Hedge Fund Giant Bridgewater Now Has Two Ex-Officers Running for Senate

(Bloomberg) -- Hedge fund giant Bridgewater Associates now has two former top executives running for the US Senate this year on the Republican ticket, as former chief financial officer Nella Domenici won the party’s Senate primary Tuesday in New Mexico.

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The daughter of deceased former New Mexico Republican Senator Pete Domenici, she worked at Bridgewater with then-co-chief executive officer David McCormick, who earlier this year won the GOP Senate nomination in Pennsylvania, a key swing state.

Republicans are hoping Domenici’s name recognition and record of business achievement will help her mount a strong challenge to two-term Democratic Senator Martin Heinrich.

Domenici stressed her business background and New Mexico roots in her primary campaign and criticized crime, border enforcement and the cost of living.

“Successful businesswoman Nella Domenici is uniquely positioned to make New Mexico competitive this November,” National Republican Senatorial Committee Chair Steven Daines of Montana said in a statement.

Domenici starts the general election campaign as an underdog. The state has tilted to the Democrats in recent years, with Heinrich winning in a blowout in 2018. The nonpartisan Cook Political Report rates the seat as a safe hold for Democrats.

Heinrich also has a fundraising advantage. The most recent Federal Election Commission reports show Domenici having raised $1.06 million cash on hand including a $500,000 loan from the candidate, while Heinrich has $4.38 million on hand.

Gary Peters of Michigan, the chair of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, said he was confident of a Heinrich victory.

“She may be trying to run on her dad’s name, but the people of New Mexico are not voting for her dad. They are voting for someone to represent them in the Senate who knows New Mexico inside and out and has been representing New Mexico with distinction since he’s been elected,” Peters said.

The politics of oil production in the state could be a factor. New Mexico has become an oil-producing powerhouse in recent years, producing nearly 2 million barrels per day, second only to Texas.

Domenici also worked at Dataminr Inc., Credit Suisse Group and Citadel. She left Bridgewater in 2018 and has most recently been on the board of directors of AllianceBernstein Holding LLP.

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