dianna duran KRQE
Dianna Duran resigned her post as New Mexico’s top election official on Thursday night, and plead guilty to committing campaign election fraud on Friday. The former Secretary of State of New Mexico spearheaded a campaign to fight perceived widespread voter fraud by immigrants, evidence of which was never found. KRQE News / Screenshot

Former Secretary of State of New Mexico Dianna Duran plead guilty on Friday to two felonies and four misdemeanors stemming from directly from an embezzlement case and, in a larger sense, to her admitted gambling addiction. Duran’s crimes concern around $14,000 worth of campaign funds, which she is accused of taking out to use for gambling at casinos around New Mexico. That’s actually chump change considering how much cash Duran bled into her decade-long gambling addiction. In her initial indictment listed hundreds of thousands in withdrawals.

The initial indictment against Duran listed $430,448 in alleged withdraws at casino between 2013 and 2014. It also listed a dozen complaints of inappropriate campaign contributions, The Albuquerque Journal reported.

"I now realize some of my choices were not healthy and I will be seeking the appropriate professional help," Duran said outside of an Albuquerque courtroom on Friday, according to the AP . "I want it to be completely clear to all New Mexicans that at no time did I ever do anything in my official capacity as secretary of state that would jeopardize the integrity of the office."

Calls for Duran to step down had resounded across the state for months from furious Democrats and fellow Republicans. The state GOP had recently taken steps to force her to resign, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Duran’s admission of fraud is bound to provoke serious schadenfreude among New Mexico’s immigrant community. Suspicions of voter fraud committed by immigrants were the centerpiece of her campaign. While she was violating campaign finance laws under her coworker’s noses by funneling donations into her own pocket, her office started an witch hunt which demonized the immigrant community.

There was, she said “a culture of corruption.”

Widespread voter fraud was never shown. New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez will now choose a replacement for Duran to serve in the months ahead of the 2016 election.

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