The 2008 campaign started yesterday

Editor's note: Rob Brading posted a comment on Kari's "Man of the Year" post. It should be upgraded to its own thread, so here it is.

My thanks to you all. I'm honored to have had the opportunity to be part of this campaign and to have helped make a difference in Oregon. I was privileged to work with Marah and Trevor and so many others -- staff and volunteers -- who made this campaign. And of course, I'll never be able to repay, or even adequately explain, the support and love from my wife, Karen.

But really and truly I was lucky enough to be one part of a much larger campaign.

The big, supposedly unobtainable, prize this election was a House Democratic majority. We won that prize because hundreds and hundreds of people busted their tails. As Sara [Gelser] pointed out, we had candidates across the state who campaigned with diligence and spirit and conviction in districts where they faced much greater odds with less support than I had. They had staff and volunteers who worked incredibly hard and turned "impossible" races into near victories.

Each of those campaigns contributed in big ways to winning the House. One of my lessons from this campaign, and from watching others, is that every contribution -- time, money, spirit, energy, presence -- has an impact far larger and more potent than the gift alone. Those contributions don't just increase arithmetically but exponentially - at the very least. And you never know when the what seems a trivial contribution will make all the difference.

So, yes, congratulations are in order. But we also have a two-fold job to do. First, we need to hold the legislature and the governor accountable -- on education, on health care, on the environment, on fair and equal treatment for all, on easing the burden on working families. And second, now is the time to begin working not just to hold onto these hard-won majorities but to increase them in 2008.

The campaign started yesterday.

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    it was my pleasure and privilege to be a volunteer for your campaign Rob, thanks again for running and giving Minnis the race of her life.

    the 2008 race, unfortunately is already in full(ish) swing. Portland State, and probably much of downtown Portland is already awash with paid signature gatherers for initiatives that progressive folks will have to spend a lot of time and energy fighting. Make sure you read what you sign. I stop and talk to the gatherers to see what they're promoting and it's mostly the same old anti-tax, anti-immigrant crap.

    we got 31 seats this time, but we're going to have to work just as hard to keep them in '08. let's not let any slide!

  • Bill R. (unverified)

    Thank you, Rob.

  • rocky (unverified)

    I too am sorry you did not make it...makes one wonder what is wrong with the people in your district. So thanks to you, better luck next time..only 2 years away. I wish in your proposals for the Guv and Co. you would have expressed the desire of them putting a real Ethics commission with real penalties in place. You should have made this priority #1 as you were certainly victimized by lack of there of. Everyone reading Blue Oregon should E mail every Demo and demand #1 agenda item Ethics, Ethics, Ethics, no compromise.

  • Barney Hilbert (unverified)

    Rob... You may have lost the battle but no doubt you were key to winning the war. I'm 86 years old and have lived in the district for 26 years voting against Minnises for more years than I like to think about. A campaign worker picked up your yard sign yesterday, told her I hoped that you intended to use them again in 2008. Thanks for bringing a ray of hope for the future into this old geezer's life!

  • verasoie (unverified)

    Anyone know if Kulongoski is term-limited for 2010?

    I ask because, if not, it remains a distinct possibility that he'd run again (without making any predictions about the state of affairs between now and then).

    That could have serious implications for 2008, particularly the Senate, because it would make it more likely that potential contenders for the Senate, namely Kitzhaber and DeFazio, would not wait to run for the governorship in 2010 if Kulongoski isn't being forced out.

  • David (unverified)

    Yes, Oregon governors are limited to two CONSECUTIVE terms (so Kitz could have run again in 2006).

  • Don (unverified)

    I don't understand the hostility towards paid signature gatherers. They are just doing a job that many of you would not want to do. Both sides use paid signature gatherers. Some of them are probably shady in how they do their jobs but I feel that the majority actually follow the laws and do their job properly.

    You may not like the initiatives they run but signing them only helps those who take the jobs. As we saw in this last vote just because they make it to the ballot (and they will anyways) doesn’t mean they will pass.

  • Michael (unverified)

    Rob, I remember balling on the phone with your gotv coordinator Wednesday, I couldn't believe that someone so awful could be re-elected by the people that she clearly doesn't represent. I was filled with with disbelief at just how close it was and thought to myself I could have done more and the outcome would be different. I still believe you should have won and you should know that in 2008 if you decide to run again I will be riding my bike out to Troutdale everyday with a shiny new Brading helmet. I’d get hit by a car everyday to get that woman out of office. Overall I am happy about the elections, it seems as though everything worked out nationally as well. Anyways I hope to see you again in 08.

  • Stephen Amy (unverified)
    <h2>The hostility towards paid signature-gatherers is based in the idea that there are wealthy individuals who can hire people to foment their point of view, whreas people of working-class wealth do not have this personal loudspeaker. Why should a person of "means" have more "free" speech than you or I? And don't you think that whatever initiatives we would end up with on the ballot, under a completely voluntary signature-gathering system, would better reflect popular opinion? (not that any of the court decisions barring strict volunteerism will be overturned any time soon..)</h2>
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