Kotek named House Majority Whip; Day challenged for top GOP spot

Representative Tina Kotek (D-Portland) is the unanimous choice for Democratic Majority Whip in the Oregon House. Rep. Tobias Read (D-Beaverton) has been named Deputy Majority Whip.

From the press release:

Oregon House Speaker-designee Dave Hunt announced Monday the election of Representative Tina Kotek (D-Portland) as Majority Whip of the House Democratic Majority Caucus. Kotek advances to the post after a unanimous vote at this weekend's House Democratic Caucus meeting.

House Democrats also elected Representative Tobias Read (D-Beaverton) Deputy Majority Whip.

"Representative Kotek has the skills, leadership and trust of her colleagues necessary to ensure that we pass our Roadmap for Oregon's Future," said House Speaker-designate Hunt. "Oregonians expect us to confront the tough issues around our economy, and Representative Kotek will help us take bold steps to move Oregon forward."

"I am honored to be my colleagues' choice for Majority Whip," said Kotek. "We face challenging times, and House Democrats have a chance to strengthen our economy, expand access to health care, create jobs and improve education."

The leadership decision came after Representative Peter Buckley (D-Ashland) stepped down as Majority Whip to focus on his duties as the newly appointed Co-Chair of the Joint Ways and Means Committee. As Co-Chair of Ways and Means, Buckley is responsible for writing the state's budget during a time when Oregon faces revenue shortfalls.

Rep. Buckley will continue to serve as a full member of the House Leadership Team.

The Speaker designee's office also announced today that State Rep. Arnie Roblan (D-Coos Bay) will chair the Oregon House Rules Committee. State Rep. Phil Barnhart will serve his second term as chair of the House Revenue Committee. Speaker designee Hunt also said that State Rep. Nancy Nathanson will serve as vice chair of the Ways and Means Committee for the second straight session.

In GOP-related news, Oregon Catalyst is reporting that former State Representative (and frequent BlueO commentor) Bob Tiernan will challenge current GOP Chair Vance Day for his job.

  • (Show?)

    Wow. Bob Tiernan finally resurfaces. That's hilarious. I thought we were rid of him forever.

    For the record, the former Republican state representative and professional union-buster from Lake Oswego is NOT the same Bob Tiernan as the one that regularly comments here at BlueOregon. That Bob Tiernan is a libertarian from Gresham.

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    The news about Tina Kotek could give David Crowe and the other right wing religious nuts a heart attack. Tough!

    Message to Bob Tiernan: Give it up Bob, the party cannot be saved and you will be blamed after two years of trying. Let Vance Day twist in the wind -- he deserves it.

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    Um, so is there a new Assistant Majority Whip? Read was that, before he moved up to Deputy when Kotek moved to Whip.

    And is this press release somewhere on the web? I can't find it at Hunt's page or the Legislature's press release page.

  • RichW (unverified)

    Great Choice!!! Since Tina Kotek is a neighbor I expect a lot of "pork projects" now for my street. :)

    Seriously, though, Tina has been to just about every community meeting here in North Portland so the job is well deserved.

    Congrats to Tina!

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    Yea, I live out in Gresham, so I'm not in the district that often. But I've always found it funny that I've come across Tina out working in the district more times than I ever saw Lim (my previous rep) or Minnis (my current rep). The only time I ever saw Minnis out and about was at Target a few years back. I joked that my Christmas gift to her and Joh was that I didn't go over and talk to them.

  • Carla Axtman (unverified)


    The press release came to me in email. Would you like me to forward it to you? I posted all of the information that was in the PR, so I don't know what to say about the Asst Majority Whip position.

  • LT (unverified)

    The Republican news strikes me as ironic. Devlin is the Majority Leader in the Senate, and defeated the acerbic Tiernan for state rep. years ago.

    The acerbic Tiernan is going to win over voters who didn't vote for GOP candidates in 2006 or 2008? How does he plan to do that?

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    What Evan said -- where is this press release?? This is important information.

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    Just to clarify, Carla -- I'm not criticizing you (or not very much, beyond the general bewilderment at why BlueO continues to publish unsigned blog posts)

    I'm more baffled that such important news would not be posted in a public way by the caucus itself. I can't imagine the thought process behind that.

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    Pete, The section is called "In the News" for a reason; it's in the news and it's a designated category. We don't make up news. If it's opinion or someone's own swing on their own research, they'll sign it. Take Carla up on her offer and she'll forward you the release.

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    Karol, I'm pretty disheartened by your comment.

    This discussion has taken place in great depth many months ago, and it was my understanding -- and the understanding of other BlueOregon community members that I've talked to -- that BlueOregon, and specifically Kari, had heard loud and clear that the the community wanted a change to the policy of anonymity on "in the news" and "elsewhere…" posts.

    I know there is (or was) a completely redesigned site in the works. Although I never understood why a change to the anonymity policy had to wait for the new site, I've been pretty patient (though, I suppose, mostly engaging elsewhere) due to my understanding that a change was around the corner.

    I have no desire to rehash the entire debate, but here are the two most essential points in the debate, in my view:

    • The editors of BlueOregon consistently assert that BlueOregon is, editorially, a non-entity, and that the the opinions expressed are those of the individual contributors, not of anything like an "editorial board." This is as it should be. However, the choices of what "in the news" or "elsewhere…" items to run involves editorial judgment. It's only fair that the reader should know who is making that judgment -- especially if a collective "BlueOregon" editorial board doesn't exist. In many cases, the poster is oblivious to the controversy that might be stirred up by his or her choice; this is fine, it's human nature. We often fail to recognize our own bias or how it manifests. Leaving a signature off the item leaves the reader in the dark on an important matter. It sets the wrong tone, and it leaves BlueOregon wide open to the kind of well-poisoning meta discussion that was prevalent during the primary season. It's not the only cause of that, but it's one cause that's very easy for you to change.
    • As far as I can tell, members of the community have been nearly unanimous in their opposition to the anonymous nature of "in the news" and "elsewhere…" A number of people have tried to defend the policy, but I believe all (or nearly all) of them have been BlueOregon editors or fellows. Moreover, I don't recall anyone advancing an argument for what purpuse the anonymity of these posts serves. Downplaying the concerns of community members is one thing (and I know that a lot of lame ideas can sometimes get traction); but failing to advance a compelling reason of your own is quite another.

    I am a big fan of BlueOregon. It's a great resource for keeping track of what's going on in the state, and making contact with people I might not meet otherwise. But considering how much (appropriate) criticism I hear from you guys of the Oregonian's tin-eared attitude toward its readership, I would hope you guys would aspire to do better.

    I thought this matter had already been decided, and was merely awaiting implementation; but your comment makes me wonder.

  • Insider (unverified)

    The Assistant Majority Whip position has been eliminated, and replaced with the Ways & Means Co-Chair on the House Democratic Leadership Team.

    So, same strong players. Just new positions on the team.

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    Pete --

    Great thoughts. Thank you.

    The implementation of the new BlueOregon 2.0 has hit a bunch of snags -- most critically, the huge workload that was the 2008 election cycle. (It was probably a bad idea to think we could roll something like that out in the midst of all the client work at Mandate Media.)

    Because the new tech isn't there, we're still operating under the same old editorial direction. That said, I think you'll note that there's been vastly fewer "in the news" items in recent months - as I, and others, work harder to have a take on the news, not just post clips and links.

    That said, this was an important news item, wasn't posted anywhere else, and should get up online. After all, most other news outlets may not consider caucus leadership appointments hard news, but for BlueOregon's niche audience, it sure is.

    I'm not sure what you're asking us to do when we've got a press release that's got breaking news of interest to our audience -- wait until someone else posts it, and then link to it? What if no one does?

    I'm hopeful to get some time here in the ever-shrinking interregnum between election cycles to actually finish off Blue2, but in the meantime, don't sweat the small stuff.

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    Kari, thank you for the thoughtful response. Of course I understand complexities of a major system upgrade -- especially during the kind of election cycle we just had.

    All I'm saying is that "in the news…" and "elsewhere" items should have attribution. That's it. If it's a technical challenge, just having the editor who posts it add a comment immediately after posting saying that they did it would do just fine. I think if you review older comments on this subject, you'll find that's all that most people have ever asked for. It is certainly "small stuff" in terms of the difficulty of accomplishing it, but it has a big impact on how BlueOregon comes across to the reader.

    Now that you mention it, BlueOregon definitely has done a much better job of producing substantive analysis, and fewer dry "in the news" items. I really like the "Quick Hits" series.

    But, just to reiterate -- I don't have any problem with "in the news" or "elsewhere." Never have. They are often some of the better conversation-starters. I just want to see a little "posted by…" signature. That's all.

  • Lawn Order (unverified)

    So...does anyone know why in 1998, Bob Tiernan suddenly withdrew from the race for Supreme Court Judge? I think he was in a run off with Riggs, and he had a bunch of money. Seemed to be running along nicely, then...BAM, he's out.

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