Author Archives: Diane Jukofsky

Editorials & Reporting Indicate 2020’s Failed Legislative Session Will Come Back to Bite Republicans in November

Oregon’s 2020 legislative “session” is history with virtually nothing to show for its scheduled 35 days, thanks to the taxpayer-funded walk-out by Republicans. The GOP legislators walked off the job to prevent passage of the cap-and-trade bill, but of course, their not showing up for work meant the demise of scores of other important pieces of legislation. These include bills that could have resulted in more affordable housing, an earthquake early-warning system, mental health clinics, wildfire resilience for the state’s forests and communities, secure storage of firearms and free breakfasts to more than 100,000 additional children.

Will the GOP tactic hurt candidates next November?  It certainly should, and media coverage indicates it certainly will.  Take a look at some of the analysis:

The “grievous miscalculation” was also covered in the national media; this Vox story is one example: “Oregon Republicans are subverting democracy by running away. Again.

Then there’s the walk-off’s telling backstory, reported by the Associated Press, which explained why Republicans were refusing to return to Salem unless Democrats allowed the cap-and-trade bill to go before Oregon’s voters: 

“Doing so would likely have generated a ‘no’ campaign paid for by the deep-pocketed fossil fuel industry. Since July, Oregon Republican legislators have received hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from corporations and industry groups, including the fossil fuels industry, according to the Oregon League of Conservation Voters.”

Read the AP story here on the KATU website. 

How deep-seated is this partnership between Republican lawmakers and corporate interests?  This article, published last June in The Nation, is revealing and alarming: Behind Oregon’s GOP Walkout Is a Sordid Story of Corporate Cash

All these articles will dismay you, but you’ll also feel determined to ensure we see big changes come November.

Rescheduled: Pot O’ Gold Dinner & Auction Will Be Held on Sunday, May 31st

Please note the change of date! Originally scheduled for March 22, the always-fun Pot O’ Gold Dinner is rescheduled for May 31, 2020, because of concerns related to COVID-19.  

So hold on to your tickets and watch this space in case there are further developments.  If you have purchased tickets and are unable to attend on May 31st and would like a refund, please contact anita.g.oregon@gmail.com

Come have a wonderful evening while you help us support local Democratic candidates during this all-important election year. Click here for details about the dinner and the exciting live auction and to purchase tickets. 


COVID-19 Confidential: Sorting the Trustables on the Coronavirus

 By Mary Lyon  

Inconsistent and sometimes conflicting White House leadership confronting the coronavirus is enough to drive the average citizen to seek a second opinion. It’s no wonder that state and local officials are putting such a high priority on compiling and sharing reliable information. 

Oregon Health Authority policy advisor Charles Gallia is blunt: What’s most important and most needed right now “is somebody whose word you can trust.” HD37 Rep. Rachel Prusak says it’s a sky-high priority in Salem right now to “make sure people don’t have misinformation.” 

Prusak and Gallia both applaud the new COVID-19 update page launched at the end of February on Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley’s website. The link features regular updates on “Federal Action,” “Resources for Individuals” and “Resources for Employers.”

Gallia also recommended the Oregon Health Authority’s page Novel Coronavirus Updates (COVID-19). Prusak endorses both Merkley’s page, OHA, and the Centers for Disease Control. She says legislators and the Governor’s office are coordinating with OHA to make sure everyone has plenty of solid updates and usable tips to share with constituents. 

Clackamas County Commissioners declared a two-week “state of emergency” in early March and are working closely with counterparts in Washington County as well as with officials in Salem. The declaration is a step below a “public health emergency,” but still allows greater and more flexible access to state resources. As of March 2 there were three known incidents of presumptive coronavirus in Oregon on record, two locally and a third in Umatilla County. The “state of emergency” in Clackamas County remains in effect through Monday, March 16; the county’s COVID-19 webpage has updated information.

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2020 Jill Thorn Grant

The Jill Thorn Grant is awarded by the Democratic Party of Clackamas County (DPCC) to a female Democrat who is preparing to run for public office for the first time. The recipient may use the $500 award at her discretion for training, preparation for a campaign or any other campaign-related expenses.

This award commemorates the legacy of Jill Thorn’s public service and the example her life provides to other women seeking to serve the community by serving in public office.

Requirements:

  • Registered female Democrat
    • Preparing to run for public office for the first time
    • Resident of Clackamas County or running for an office that includes at least part of Clackamas County
  • Nomination by a current DPCC Precinct Committee Person either by using the Jill Thorn Grant Nomination Form or via direct application by using the Jill Thorn Grant Application Form. (See links below.)
  • Submission of either of these completed by March 19, 2020, as directed on the form.

Nominations and applications will be accepted until March 19, 2020. After screening the forms, a representative of the subcommittee will contact each nominee or applicant to schedule a short interview. Interviews will be held from March 21 through March 24 at a time and place to be determined. After the subcommittee makes its decision, it will report to the Executive Committee of the DPCC. Should the Executive Committee approve the award, it will forward its recommendation to the Central Committee of the DPCC for consideration at its April 16 regular meeting. Announcement and presentation of the award will be scheduled subsequent to that decision.

Selection Criteria:

  • Demonstrated commitment to public service
  • Need for support in pursuing candidacy for office
  • Likelihood of success as a candidate for office
  • Candidate responses provided on the application form and responses from a personal interview

The candidate may attach a one-page resume to the application form or alternatively, attach a one-page explanation of service and other details to be considered.

Attachments:

Application Form

Nomination Form


Jill Elaine Thorn (1944-2012)

Jill Thorn was an accomplished professional, wife and mother, as well as a public servant and community leader. She was elected to West Linn City Council in 1985 and served as Mayor of West Linn from 1993-2000.

She also served as a member of the League of Oregon Cities, as Chair of the Clackamas County Democrats, and Second Vice Chair of the Democratic Party of Oregon. Jill Thorn’s career was devoted to service to the community and mentoring others.

This award commemorates Jill’s public service and the example her life provides to other women seeking to serve the community by running for public office.

The Right Prescription for GOTV

by Mary Lyon

Not sure how to broach the subject of voting when aiming to Get Out The Vote? Just check with “the doctor.” The Willamette Women Democrats recently had a consult with Reed College Political Science Professor Dr. Paul Gronke, and the doctor was definitely IN. He had “prescriptions” for smarter outreach to potential voters, especially younger ones.

Gronke’s “Science of Voter Turnout” research established a key guideline. In a word, “Connect!” We are social creatures and want to fit in. So let that work for you when you’re talking with potential voters. 

Dr. Paul Gronke spoke at a recent Willamette Women Democrats meeting

Effective ways to engage potential voters center on what you have in common with them.  Gronke describes Oregon as a high-turnout state, which means new voters have lots of company.

And think local. Point out that others like them – classmates, neighbors, friends – have already committed to voting. You’re local so you’re a neighbor yourself or perhaps a member of a local organization. Let them know that someone’s paying attention to whether or not they participate in the election.

It’s also valuable to know what NOT to do. Gronke cautioned against sounding desperate – this is not the place or time to bemoan how people aren’t voting. Much better to emphasize the bigger voter turnout here. He stressed gentle pressure, only. Don’t come on strong, advocating for any one candidate or issue. That can be a turn-off. 

The goal is to transform nonvoters into voters, NOT to try to change minds about an issue or candidate.  

It all comes down to this: The single most important element of voter mobilization is urging the person to BE a voter.

If you’d like to be a Clackamas County Democrats Neighborhood Leader, contact us here.