Oregon Republican Party files complaint against Democratic leaders

By Chris Rizo | Jun 11, 2009

Bob Tiernan

SALEM, Ore. (Legal Newsline)-The Oregon Republican Party filed an ethics complaint Thursday against two senior members of the Legislature's Democratic leadership for allegedly trading political favors for votes.

Oregon Republican Party Chairman Bob Tiernan and ORP Executive Director Andrew Over filed the complaint with the Oregon Government Ethics Commission against House Speaker Dave Hunt of Gladstone and Ways and Means Co-Chairman Peter Buckley of Ashland.

He said the two Democrats traded "millions of taxpayer dollars for votes to pass a huge tax increase on Oregon families and small businesses."

Specifically, Tierman charges that Hunt and Buckley should be investigated over a June 9 letter to Rep. Greg Smith, R-Heppner, promising state funding of local projects in exchange for support of legislation to increase corporate and personal income taxes.

Smith agreed to the budget deal that brought $20 million to his rural, eastern Oregon district.

"This is the kind of 'pay for play' politics which Oregonians hate," Tiernan said. "Our Ethics Commission complaint against the Speaker is intended to expose the pork barrel practices of the Democrats in Salem which have made Oregon one of the highest taxed states in the country."

From Legal Newsline: Reach staff reporter Chris Rizo at chrisrizo@legalnewsline.com.

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