Office seekers visit the River

Starnes and Pelton are on May ballot


April 14, 2022 | View PDF

Patrick Starnes and Ashley Pelton were in the streets of Blue River campaigning for Oregon Governor and State Senate, respectively.

BLUE RIVER: Candidates for Oregon's governorship and State Senate District 6 were in Blue River recently for a meet and greet with local residents. Both say they would like to avoid partisan issues and help rural communities have a stronger voice.

Patrick Starnes, who'd like to become the state's top official, said he was drawn to the idea of "working on the bigger picture, which means the whole state." A Democrat, one of his key issues is campaign finance reform, which he's put into practice by not accepting any contributions over $1,000 as well as financial support from corporations or political action committees.

Ashley Pelton, a social worker who's adopted the tagline of "Finding cracks and filling gaps," said she's backing a rural cooperative initiative aimed at addressing homelessness the housing shortage crisis and lack of affordable housing.

Starnes, who used to live in the area and served on the McKenzie School Board, said in going around Oregon he's found people have a lot more in common than they're often given credit for. "People are tired of divisiveness," he says. "People would like to share successes for a change."

In her campaign, Pelton is particularly focused of healthcare issues including getting rural clinics certified to increase their access to resources as well as funding addiction treatment services. Those measures, she says, will prove valuable when, "You're not just treating that person but the others in the community as well."

Fifteen Democrats have filed for the 2022 primary election on May 17th. Besides Starnes they include: Bridget Barton, Court Boice, David Burch, Reed Christensen, Christine Drazan, Jessica Gomez, Nick Hess, Tim McCloud, Kerry McQuisten, Brandon Merritt, Bud Pierce, John Presco, Stan Pulliam, Amber Richardson, Bill Sizemore, Stefan Strek, Marc Thierman, and Bob Tiernan.

Pelton will have fewer butterflies when ballots are counted. She's running unopposed in the Democratic race for SD 6.


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