In the past, I have happily cast ballots for Greg Walden. I was glad when he came to Congress, closing out the embarrassing Wes Cooley affair with the promise of sober, reasonable, and involved representation. Walden lived up to that promise for several terms, earning my vote the next November.

In recent years, though, something has changed; the involvement is gone. Walden seems to care more about raking in campaign cash and making House Speaker Paul Ryan happy than even meeting with his constituents. He has taken to sneaking in and out of places with the stealth of a ninja: a Rotary meeting here, a high-dollar fundraiser there, appearing and disappearing like an ill wind. Town hall meetings are announced with less than 36 hours’ notice, such as one in Boardman a few months ago, or they don’t happen at all.

Jamie McLeod-Skinner, on the other hand, has been parking her camper all over the 2nd District, talking with – and, more importantly, listening to – folks from every walk of life here, from farmers and ranchers in Pendleton to small business owners in John Day. She hears our stories and considers how all stakeholders can be treated fairly in the public arena.

A congressman who seems to be afraid of his constituents cannot effectively represent them. Greg Walden needs to be forced to face his fear of private citizens by being returned to their proud ranks. Elect Jamie McLeod-Skinner to Congress.

Chris Early

Irrigon

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