A panelist for DHM research shared some polling results with me that DHM shares with it’s panelists.
The takeaway is this. A strong plurality of Oregonians say that Oregon needs to go in a more conservative direction. Not conservative mind you just a more conservative direction. This in spite of a 38% to 29% Democratic voter registration edge in Oregon.
Trouble for Governor Brown?
Governor Brown is known to be one of the more liberal members in Democratic leadership. so this could signal trouble. If you assume that those that believe Oregon should head in a more conservative direction are voting or leaning Dr. Bud Pierce for Governor, then Pierce only needs to win one third of the “neither” crowd to win the Governor race.
However that’s easier said than done.
It’s probable that many “neither” voters are Democrats or Democratic leaners happy with the status quo but who don’t want a further leftward drift. So how can Dr. Pierce attract these voters who prefer liberal leaning policies?
He can argue that a more fiscally conservative Pierce administration would act as a “centrist” financial check on a Democratic Party that already holds power in both houses, while voting for Governor Brown would take Oregon even further left by allowing the Democrats to continue their practice of totally ignoring the Republicans and rural Oregon.
In the 1990’s Governor Kitzhaber was faced with a Republican Legislature and he earned the nickname of Dr. No for his frequent use of the veto. A Pierce governorship could be the second coming of Dr. No. using his veto, or threat of veto, to force bi-partisan legislation.
Many Oregonians, and voters nationwide, believe the Democrats and Republicans don’t talk and compromise enough. The “Neither” crowd may appreciate a more fiscally conservative Governor who will force Democrats to build legislative coalitions in order to make their bills veto proof. As long as he can convince the moderately liberal voters that he will not reverse the entire progressive agenda.