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A Treasurer quietude

Had looked like a race of considerable interest between two candidates of opposing parties but not so far apart otherwise, and both with some deep background and respect in a range of quarters. Talking about the run for Oregon state treasurer, which seemed headed for a matchup of state Senator Ben Westlund, the Republican-turned-Independent-turned-Democrat of rural Tumalo, and moderate state Representative Vicki Berger of Salem.

An update in the Salem Statesman-Journal, however, reports that Berger won’t be running for treasurer after all. One factor, she suggested, was that if she departed, Democrat Paul Evans – the former Monmouth mayor who made a strong impression in a Senate run last year – might file for it. That and “The fact of the matter is, I didn’t want to give up my seat for it. I like what I do.” There appear to be no likely Republican candidates for the office hustling around.

Westlund still appears on track to file for the job, though his formal statements so far still have him undecided between the Senate and Treasurer. (The latter seems a lot more likely.) He’s moving on it slower than might have been expected, partly because of family issues (his mother’s illness and death this summer). At this rate, if he jumps in formally this fall and starts to work, he could rapidly turn into a presumptive favorite.

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