Oregon City's Rob Reynolds announces run for Congress
Unincorporated Oregon City resident Rob Reynolds, who is a business manager in the commercial fire and security industry, this month announced his campaign to obtain the Republican Party's nomination to take on Rep. Kurt Schrader, a Democrat from Canby.
Reynolds says his platform includes an economy thriving with living-wage jobs, a tax code that is fair for hard-working Oregonians, and health care access that allows people to use savings accounts to reduce costs.
"I'm running to save the West Linn paper mill, which announced its closure this month, and I testified before the Clackamas Board of Commissioners demanding action to save over 260 living-wage specialized jobs," Reynolds said. "My opponent voted to pass Obamacare, which canceled health care for thousands of our residents, supported damaging regulation which has strangled our economy, and now serving in the minority party as lame-duck, he's more ineffective than ever."
The 5th Congressional District includes most of Clackamas County. It extends thoughout Marion, Polk, Lincoln and Tillamook counties and in parts of Multnomah and Benton counties.
Schrader, 66, was a Canby farmer, veterinarian and state lawmaker when he was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2008.
Also this month, the Council for Affordable Health Coverage (CAHC) — a coalition of employers, insurers, life science companies, PBMs, brokers, agents, patient groups, and physician organizations — presented Schrader with the Affordability Champion award, the organization's highest honor. Schrader was the only House Democrat to receive this recognition.
"Rep. Schrader has been a constant leader in seeking to stabilize health insurance markets and solve the most pressing challenges under the Affordable Care Act," said CAHC President Joel White. "This Congress, he joined with members of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus to champion a market stabilization framework that would have repealed the onerous medical device tax, protected insurance subsidies for vulnerable Americans, and spurred state innovation through technical changes to Section 1332 waivers, among other provisions. His efforts to bring certainty and stability to health care exchanges and protect patient access to care are truly commendable. On behalf of our diverse membership, CAHC is pleased to award Rep. Schrader with this well-deserved honor and extends to him our gratitude for working to lower the cost of health care for every American."
Reynolds dismissed CAHC as "another lobbiyng group [that] will support the congressmen who support them." He said that he can't afford to use his own health insurance with a $6,000 deductible and feels as if he was lied to with the passage of Obamacare.
"Schrader told in a town hall I would save $2,500 a year," Reynolds said. "I told him then that would not happen. Congressmen Schrader said his staff would help me. They did not and could not."
Reynolds said to solve the health care crisis, the government needs to get out of health care.
"The free market will solve my insurance needs," Reynolds said. "For the low income and disabled, this is where we need doctors groups coming up with a plan, not the government."
As for the fact that several Republicans have lost races to Schrader since the Affordable Care Act vote, Reynolds said he is running a grassroots campaign. Reynolds has been attending the Republican Party meetings of most of the seven counties in Schrader's district.
"President Trump is taking care of what President Obama has done to our country," Reynolds said. "We had other Republicans candidates run for this office. You will have to research why they did not win."
Schrader says that Trump and the Republicans have been taking the country backward. After taking to the House floor repeatedly for the deficit-neutral tax bill, Schrader issued a statement on final passage of the GOP bill that is slated to add $1.5 trillion to the national deficit.
"It's a sorry time in America," Schrader said. "What a Christmas present for our kids and grandkids, already burdened with soaring education and housing costs, to mortgage their future for political gain. We could have done bipartisan tax reform that does not increase our debt and deficit and instead benefits a majority of Americans. We could have worked out a tax plan that helps working families and small businesses rather than the wealthy and big corporations. We could have seized on this opportunity to increase our economic competitiveness overseas rather than burden future generations. I am disappointed at the complete lack of fiscal responsibility toward our country and our children's future."
Reynolds has been married for over 25 years, and he and his wife have three children. He is expecting his first grandchild next year.
Reynolds grew up in Milwaukie, graduated from local public schools, and eventually earned a bachelor's degree in business administration from Warner Pacific College.