Wise move by Oregon’s state Senate Republicans with their choice of Jackie Winters as the new minority leader. It’ll be tough to replace Ted Ferrioli, who’s held the job for a very long time, but Winters – second most veteran Oregon legislator – can do it. Put aside the minority and female elements: She’s a knowledgeable, skilled and a working-across-the-aisle kind of lawmaker, the kind we don’t see enough of. Although Oregon still has a surprising number of them left.
Years back when she ran for a U.S. House seat, I watched her at a forum with her primary competitor, who went on to win that race. Asked about legislation and legislative activities, Winters replied with precise and detailed, maybe a little wonkish, answers. His opponent tossed out the red meat, which in a conventional sense meant he “won” the debate. But she’s the one who got my respect that evening.
Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic put it well in a November 16 description of his magazine (it was in a subscription pitch mail) and where and how it positions itself these days. Part of it: “We’re on the side of E pluribus unum. We’re on the side of the Constitution. We’re on the side of dignity in office. We’re opposed to corruption. Most important, in our self-conception we’re a magazine of the Enlightenment. What I mean by that is that we endorse and believe in the Enlightenment principle that there is such a thing as observable, empirical reality, and that our job is to report on that reality and interpret it. Therefore, the whole fake-news, post-truth moment that we’re allegedly in—we’re the enemy of that.” A lot of people probably could go along with, and join in, that.