State Rep. Knute Buehler, who has been raising money in a gubernatorial exploratory committee for many weeks, announced that he will seek the Republican nomination for Governor. If successful, he will undoubtedly again oppose Gov. Kate Brown (D). The two ran against each other for Secretary of State in 2012, a re-election campaign that Ms. Brown won, 51-43%. Gov. Brown ascended to her position when Gov. John Kitzhaber (D) resigned over a budding ethics scandal. Oregon has no Lt. Governor, so the Secretary of State becomes the acting Governor if a vacancy occurs in the state’s top elected position. Ms. Brown was then elected in 2016 to serve the balance of the current term. She will be heavily favored for re-election to a full four-year term, next year.
Republicans had hoped that Secretary of State and former gubernatorial candidate Dennis Richardson would challenge Gov. Kate Brown (D) next year, but such will not be the case. Mr. Richardson announced yesterday that he would continue in his present position and not run for Governor, even though he would not have to risk his statewide office to do so. In Oregon, the Governor and state Labor Commissioner run in the midterm election, while the Secretary of State, Attorney General, and state Treasurer run in presidential years.
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