About the transition of the Oregon House seat in district 18, from newly re-elected Mac Sumner to someone else, three quick observations.
As we know now, his departure is for ongoing treatment for lung cancer, a condition he clearly has known about for quite a few months and didn’t disclose to the voters. [UPDATE/AMENDMENT]: On reflecting and after considering a comment – see comment 1 below – this is too harsh and too pointed at the candidate; Sumner didn’t hide his condition. But word of it was not widely spread, and several people and news organizations should have better informed the voters.]
The Salem Statesman Journal reports that the nominees offered by local Republicans to take Sumner’s place are Mike Shrock of Aurora, Ken Iverson of Woodburn, Vic Gilliam of Silverton, Victor Hoffer of Mount Angel and Jeff Faville of Salem. We have no particular take on what the Marion and Clackamas County commissioners may do in picking among them, as they are supposed to do by December 27. (A curiosity: Tootie Smith, who once held this House seat, was earlier said to be interested but not listed in among the nominated five.)
We will suggest the most interesting of these prospects may be Hoffer, who has had some visbility as a candidate before. In the Blue Oregon review of the prospects, state labor director Dan Gardner weighs in with a recollection: “Victor Hoffer ran against me in 2000 for Labor Commissioner He is the nicest opponent I ever had. I used to call him Mr full service He is a lawyer and an ambulance driver.”
Finally: Isn’t this system for replacing legislators – by way of county commissioners – just a little clunky? Doesn’t it give odd imbalances in cases of districts where one or more counties have only a precinct or two of participation, but commissioners get a heavy say in the decision?Share on Facebook