Central Oregonians Jamie McLeod-Skinner and Karen Rippberger attend meet and greet event

PRISCILLA SMITH - Second Congressional District Representative candidate Jamie McLeod-Skinner speaks to the crowd.

Healthcare, water rights and education topped the list of discussions Monday evening during a candidate meet and greet that the Crook County Democrats hosted at the Bowman Museum.

Congressional District 2 candidate Jamie McLeod-Skinner and House District 55 candidate Karen Rippberger introduced themselves to the nearly 50 locals in attendance. They shared some of their concerns before answering questions from the audience.

Rippberger, a Democrat, is running against Oregon House District 55 Representative Mike McLane.

She has four main areas of concern: affordable accessible health care, local control, land and water rights, and jobs and stewardship.

"I am an economic refugee. I was priced out of the market. I couldn't afford to live down there," Rippberger says of the Silicon Valley in California where she and her husband lived and worked as educators. "I want to work for affordable housing. I want people to be able to live where they work."

They settled La Pine, where she says they were welcomed.

"I decided it was time to give something back to people who have made us so welcome," she said of her decision to run for a state representative.

McLeod-Skinner, a Democrat who lives in Terrebonne, is running against Republican U.S. Rep. Greg Walden.

She lists education, economic development, healthcare for everyone, Veterans Administration and immigration as her top priorities. During the event, she also touched on water rights and the availability of water, housing and transportation.

McLeod-Skinner supports funding early child education and students who struggle with learning. She also offered some ideas for education accessibility.

She said she wants to focus on the district instead of national politics and work together. She seeks broad support from all people of varying ideas who care about the district working together to solve local problems.

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