Blindingly Obvious: Why I'm running for the legislature in HD 52

By Walt Trandum of Sandy, Oregon. Long time local political organizer in the Clackamas County portion of District 52. Founder of the Oregon Trail Democrats in 2003 and chief architect of the 2012 nearly successful Peter Nordbye campaign. Walt is a Democratic candidate for the Oregon House of Representatives.

When asked by voters in Oregon’s District 52 why they should support my “Win With Walt” campaign for State Representative in this May’s Democratic primary, I tell them the following:

As long as we continue to allow powerful moneyed special interests to pay for the campaigns of our elected officials, we will never win. As things now stand, regardless of who we send to Salem, the game remains the same. Big money wins every time, and we have to settle for what I call the "Broken Government Game".

Once elected, their story becomes something like “Oh, we are so divided down here in Salem that most of the things you want or need are simply not doable”. Once they have convinced us of that, they take full advantage of everyone’s extremely low expectations. This allows them to grandstand modest achievements and even simple housekeeping bills, as proof that bi-partisanship is not only still possible, but thanks to them, is in fact alive and well. This becomes the reason we should keep sending them back to Salem.

Meanwhile, powerful moneyed interests control our legislature and continue to enjoy their issues being addressed, while the influence of big money makes sure that solutions to many very serious problems are kept “off the table”.

This broken government game is simply not getting the job done. Our problems are stacking up much faster that they are getting resolved. The resulting degradation is affecting the quality of our lives. As problems increase and opportunities continue to diminish, many people are finding it increasing difficult just to make ends meet. More and more Oregonians are ending up living on the streets. We can’t allow this trend to continue.

We keep sending the best game players we can find to Salem, but it’s the game itself that is broken. We need to start sending some game changers down there, and change the game itself into something that works for everyone. To get an actual win, a win that makes a difference, we need to stop electing representatives that use big money to get themselves elected. Only then can we start the business of restoring our democracy to its intended purpose.

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