By Alex Titus
Former U.S. Senator Bob Packwood recently penned an op-ed lambasting the Oregon Republican Party for embracing “right wing” candidates and its continued failure to win statewide elections. Packwood is right that the Oregon Republican Party has continually failed its voters and also the state — that’s a gimme. But he’s deeply mistaken about the reason why our candidates keep losing.
In fact, the reason Oregon Republicans come up short is because we nominate candidates with the exact policy agenda that Packwood favors: generic centrism and social liberalism. Until the GOP drops its obsession with being “moderate” and starts introducing solutions to real problems that voters care about, we’ll keep losing.
Packwood’s general political diagnosis may be misguided but he’s certainly right about the dire state of the Oregon GOP. Fundraising efforts seem to be non-existent, the party has no paid staff, and candidate recruitment is lacking to say the least. While I served in the Trump Administration, colleagues would frequently tease me about some sort of embarrassment from the party that would make national headlines. more