SANTA FE, N.M. — A Democratic candidate for governor of New Mexico is seeking to disqualify a rival candidate from their party’s June primary election.

Gubernatorial candidate and former media executive Jeff Apodaca filed a lawsuit in state district court accusing state Sen. Joseph Cervantes of failing to submit enough petition signatures to run for the Democratic nomination for governor.

Cervantes spokesman Cody Aaron on Monday called the lawsuit frivolous and without merit.

The suit asserts that about 1,400 signatures submitted by Cervantes are not valid and leave him shy of registration requirements. Apodaca says signatures submitted by Cervantes include duplicate names, non-Democrats and unregistered individuals.

U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham also is seeking the Democratic nomination to run against Republican Congressman Steve Pearce, the only Republican contender.

Two-term Gov. Susana Martinez cannot run for another consecutive term in November.