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Pamplin Media editorial board recommendation: Elect Lori Chavez-DeRemer in House District 51

While we're grateful for Rep. Janelle Bynum's service to House District 51 and her state, it's her opponent, Lori Chavez-DeRemer, who we believe in 2018 is more in step with the people residing within this district. HD 51 covers Clackamas, Sunnyside, Happy Valley, Damascus, Pleasant Valley, and a portion of Gresham's Centennial and Persimmon neighborhoods. 

Lori Chavez-DeRemerVoters who are paying close attention will remember that Bynum defeated Chavez-DeRemer in the 2016 election by fewer than 600 votes. In "Bynum vs. DeRemer 2.0," we're putting our support behind Chavez-DeRemer. She distinguishes herself as a balanced and influential leader as mayor of Happy Valley, and as a person who will advocate on behalf of all of her constituents.

The people and businesses who call District 51 home are not completely aligned with the policies supported by Bynum, who has a nearly impenetrable allegiance to her party caucus. Instead, District 51 needs a representative whose views are more consistent with the prevailing political attitudes of people who reside within the district's boundaries.

Keep in mind, Democrats account for 15,425 registered voters in House District 51, while Republicans account for 10,886, Independents at 1,776, and non-affiliated voters at 16,353. What these numbers show is that HD 51 is fairly evenly split across the political spectrum, and any candidate who swings to one extreme or the other ignores at least half of the population.

Of the two candidates in this race, only Chavez-DeRemer approaches this election from a moderate point of view.

Chavez-DeRemer voted against Ballot Measure 97, which was defeated in 2016. She recognized how the gross-receipts tax measure would have dealt a serious blow to Oregon's businesses. From a state revenue perspective, she would rather grow the economy — and jobs — which in turn create more income tax revenue without having to add new taxes and regulations.

Chavez-DeRemer also would add a refreshing point of view to the Oregon Republican caucus — she's female, Hispanic and a business owner. 

Chavez-DeRemer says she'll put education funding atop her priority list, and work to make sure dollars are spent where they are needed most — in the classroom.

It's also fair to point out that Democrats are in the majority in both the House and Senate. The November 2018 election can help reduce that imbalance. The best possible outcome of this election would be for the Legislature to move closer to a 50/50 split of Republicans and Democrats. That was the case after the 2010 election, when the Senate was fairly well balanced at 16-14, and the House was evenly divided at 30-30. To get anything passed, lawmakers couldn't rely on a majority, but had to make concessions and search for compromise, which always produces the best results for the majority of Oregonians. 

OUR RECOMMENDATION:

Elect Lori Chavez-DeRemer in House District 51

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