In just a few months, on November 6, 2018, we the people in the 20 counties of Oregon Congressional District 2 will be choosing our next representative to Congress for a two-year term. Jamie McLeod-Skinner, the Democratic Party contender for our district, was recently in Joseph for their Chief Joseph Days parade as was her opponent, Greg Walden. Jamie McLeod Skinner walked up to the open vehicle Greg Walden and his wife were riding in, shook his hand, and challenged him to three debates in the district. He agreed.
The following week Jamie McLeod-Skinner delivered a formal invitation to his office in Bend and as stated on her Facebook post said, “Thank you for agreeing with my proposal to debate. I believe the voters of our district deserve to hear both of our views about the many important issues affecting their daily lives — including healthcare, education, public land management, and economic development.”
The debates are being offered by the American Association of University Women (AAUW) in Umatilla County on August 31, The Daily Courier newspaper and Rogue Indivisible in Jackson County on October 7, and Central Oregon Community College in Deschutes County on October 22. When these three debates were proposed to both parties, the McLeod-Skinner campaign agreed, but there has yet to be a response from Walden’s office, and now no comment on McLeod-Skinner’s recent proposal.
McLeod-Skinner is also proposing offering debates or joint town hall meetings in all 20 counties. Thank you Jamie McLeod-Skinner for asking Greg Walden personally and in a formal invitation to these debates. As a constituent, I have repeatedly asked Greg Walden’s office about when there will be a local town hall meeting. I know many others who have done the same. The normal response when asked about a Town Hall schedule, Congressman Walden’s staff says, “I don’t have access to his schedule.”
When choosing an elected official, we the people who are being represented need to know a candidate’s views on the issues of concern locally, nationally, and internationally. As an Oregon District 2 constituent I am looking forward to hearing both candidates, even though I already know who I am voting for: the candidate who is working to restore openness, responsiveness, and accountability as an elected official — Jamie McLeod-Skinner. Yes, McLeod-Skinner is the rural champion that will work for us and will get my vote.