PORTLAND, Ore.– Oregon held its primary elections this week, and voters sent a clear message, according to the state’s senior U.S. Senator, Ron Wyden.

“Let’s talk about what really emerged as the, the top issue, which was essentially this whole question of our district attorney, the whole law enforcement picture. And it seems to me what voters are now saying is that position and others are really about two priorities. Folks in our community want to feel safe in their homes and on the streets.”

He also heard it in a hearing about fentanyl on Capitol Hill this week, he says.

“In matters like prevention and treatment, we had a hearing on new strategies for treatment of fentanyl.  But I think that’s going to be the new kind of focus in our community is people want to know that they’ll be safer in their homes and on the streets, and at the same time they want, justice for all.  And that means a strong focus on prevention and treatment.”

We also asked him to comment on the race for who is likely to replace Congressman Earl Blumenauer, who’s been in office for almost, 28 years.

“Earl Blumenauer has had a storied career. If you look particularly in areas like mass transit and transportation, they go right to the heart of part of what we need to do in terms of fighting the climate crisis. I was the congressman from that area prior to having the honor of being elected in the Senate, so I know that it is a district where folks feel very passionately about the future of Portland, future of our state.   In areas like cannabis where he’s brought very sensible, practical approaches to a field where there’s a lot of passion and emotion.   And he has made a great contribution to our state in many areas.”

Since Blumenauer’s district is a blue one, it is very likely that the winner of the primary is going to be our next Congresswoman, Dr. Maxine Dexter.

“I think Dr. Dexter is going to be a terrific advocate for the district and the House of Representatives. I’ve known her for years. Health care has always been my specialty going back to the days as director of the great, Great Panthers. And I think she’s going to do an outstanding job. I’ve talked to her frequently in the last a few days, and I think she’s going to make Oregon and the district proud.  My mom came to all our basketball games, and she said afterwards, dear, I know you’re going out with your friends, make sure you’re running with the right crowd.  When you talk about Earl Blumenauer and Maxine Dexter, you’re talking about the right crowd.”

What does he think that some of the results that we saw in Oregon forecast for November?

“We’re going to be seeing a campaign that is really going to focus on some economic, issues, particularly things like holding down the cost of drugs and energy and the like, and really protecting our democracy.”

You can hear Wyden’s comments on “Speaking Freely with Annette Newell,” Sunday morning at 7 on KXL and 6 AM on KINK.

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