Writings and observations

Never say die

There’s a tendency among people watching – or even involved in – political activities to throw efforts and initiatives into the “win” or “loss” column too quickly: A natural tendency to analyze and work out who the winners and losers are. The problem is that politics isn’t a one-shot over and out; it is ongoing, an evolution. Wins are hardly final, because so often they can be reversed later. Same for losses.

Today’s case in point is Oregon House Bill 2398, the bill classifying the Metolius Basin near Bend as an Area of Critical State Concern, drastically limited development there. It has been one of the hardest-fought bills of this year’s legislative session, and closely-fought. Environmentalists have supported it, but the Democratic caucus has been split, partly out of concern that the bill would undermine local planning and zoning efforts. (House Speaker Dave Hunt was among the nays. Republicans have been solidly opposed.)

Last week, the bill – which has cleared the Senate – narrowly failed in the House, and the storyline was that Democrats were sacrificing environmental issues this year to make up for their string of tax increases. And that seemed that.

Today, the bill was brought back up on reconsideration, and Representative Larry Galizio, D-Tigard, switched his vote from last week – enough, just enough, to pass it.

A veteran and highly successful lobbyist in another state often counseled: Never give up till the session ends; and even then. Good advice all over the place.

Share on Facebook