Oregonian: Brent Barton is the one.

The Oregonian's endorsement of Brent Barton over Linda Flores is a thing to behold:

We wish the Portland area could send to Salem a bushel of bright young Republicans, there to match wits with all those shiny new Democrats soon to be stalking the Capitol's corridors of power. Sadly, the Oregon GOP's metropolitan cupboard remains all but bare.

In House District 51, Linda Flores remains a politician of strong convictions. She's also still a textbook example of how little can be accomplished by an ideologue in a legislative career.

Since being elected to represent the Clackamas area in 2002, Flores has served on the House Judiciary, Health Care, Education, Water, Government Operations & Oversight and Rules & Public Affairs committees. Amid all this, we can not find a signal significant legislative achievement.

Neither can she.

This is a classic opportunity for addition by subtraction. The Oregon House will simply be a better place once Flores is gone.

Fortunately for district voters, help is at hand. Democrat Brent Barton collected both bachelor's and master's degrees at Stanford, then studied at Cambridge before graduating from Harvard Law School. He has worked tirelessly getting to know the district -- he's knocked on 10,000 doors -- and has innovative ideas on critical issues from health care to transportation. Barton is exactly the kind of representative this fast-changing district needs -- and deserves.

So, let's make it happen. Learn more about Brent Barton, then make a donation.

  • samiv (unverified)

    I hate to be rational and intelligent about this, but there is no substance to his "healthcare" plan on his own campaign website. First, it's dubious a state legislator, or legislature, can by law compel doctors to accept Medicare patients. Second, he has absolutely no discussion of what reforms to the system he supports that would actually result in meaningful cost control or making more services available to more people. In fact, his own website bullet point on health care is so content free he deserves to have it quoted here in it's entirety so he has to explain himself:

    Affordable Healthcare:

    No problem facing our society is more important than the rapidly rising costs of healthcare. System wide, prices increase 10% every year swelling the ranks of uninsured. Already more than 600,000 Oregonians are uninsured and health care costs are the greatest cause of personal bankruptcy. Brent knows we have to change the way policies are done in Oregon. Brent will lead the fight to stop letting doctors kick Medicare patients out of their practices. Brent knows we should fully-fund the "fraud squad" in the Department of Justice, which protects Oregonians from price fixing, inaccurate marketing schemes, and other illegal actions taken by pharmaceutical companies. This division has recouped millions in fraudulent Medicaid expenditures, so this investment should pay for itself and protect consumers.

    Linda Flores is a loser for sure. But based on what he has chosen to put on his own website, this guy reads like a bit of a first-class BS artist. I'm glad I don't live in that district and have to make a choice.

  • (Show?)

    samiv, i'm thinking the residents of that district are glad you don't live there. since you don't know Brent, know nothing about him as a person, an Oregonian or a young man who has worked hard not merely to win an election but to be a part of making the entire state a better place for all citizens; why you even bother to post your nonsense is beyond me. a lot of typing to admit your ignorance of the candidate and your disqualification from stating anything more than the most laughable of opinions.

    the Oregonian stills gets a big raspberry for their idiot East Multnomah County choices (they gotta give Reinhard something for a going-away gift, i guess) but they sure got this one right. Brent will be a great member of the House -- as long as he looks before lobbing a frisbee.

  • samiv (unverified)

    I guess what has T.A. in such a childish hissy fit is that I simply posted the empty rhetoric on Barton's own site verbatim.

    One thing people like T.A. can't seem to get through their pea brains is that every representative including Barton will be voting in the legislature on laws that will affect us all, so we most certainly have the right to judge him and to criticize the empty rhetoric he chose to put out on pretty much every issue on his website. What T.A. doesn't seem to realize is that I actually took the time to review what Barton had to say for himself on his website because I thought and hoped he actually might have something intelligent and promising to say there.

    So for everybody else, here is another of his truly profound "Issue" positions in it's unedited entirety:


    Everyone in our district knows the frustration of sitting in traffic – whether on Interstate 205 or Highways 212 or 224. The countless hours we waste on the road makes us late to work and keeps us away from our families. Transportation is the key to unlocking our growth potential and ensuring economic vitality. It is important that businesses looking to locate on the West Coast know that Oregon is open for business.

    WTF? Let see if we can boil down his position and what he'll vote for from one of his few chances to put his message out there completely unfiltered (since there are no legislative proposals): Let see: "Stuck in traffic bad, transportation good." Wow, I'm impressed at this product of a Stanford and Harvard Law education, who, he says, worked with the Governor to make "new investments ... in roads". I'm so sure Flores position is "Stuck in traffic good, transportation bad". (Yea, I even took the time to read the laughably thin resume on his site.)

    Another thing a serious voter might want to know is his positions on the ballot measures, not only because what it would tell us about his values, but also because as a legislator he will have some power of review of what the voters decide. There is nothing on his website that provides a clue, and a Google search doesn't turn up anything either.

    I expect the people who I vote for, those who I want my elected representatives to work with, and those who will lead committees (roles that make them de facto representatives of us all), to do more than glad hand on the stump. I expect them to have the respect for us all to present thoughtful, substantive statements about their positions and proposals on the issues. I don't care about testimonials from pathetic suckups like T.A., I deserve to hear from the candidate what his or her specific positions on issues are and why.

    Like I said T.A., Flores is horrible, but I'm sure glad I don't have to make the choice in that district on Nov. 4. I'm also dismayed that people like T.A. are making the kind of poor case they do through their witness for some candidates on the "D" side of the aisle that I support.

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    This makes me so happy - way to go Brent!

  • JTT (unverified)

    What a great editorial by the Oregonian...they nailed it. Brent will be a great addition to the Oregon House. I've met him and he's smart, thoughtful, energetic, and reasonable. Unfortunately, I have to agree that his "force Drs to take Medicare" idea is a total load of BS and a blatant hollow pander to the senior vote...and frankly very concerning. How does Brent propose to force doctors in the state take Medicare patients? Medicare after all is a federal program that in Oregon delivers the worst reimbursement rate in the nation. Doctors aren't money grubbing greedy bastards, Medicare reimbursement just don't pay the bills. In 2 years, how will he explain to his constituents that he didn't accomplish his campaign promises because they were actually impossible to implement. I want more and smarter Democrats in the legislature, but I expected more from Brent.

  • (Show?)

    dude, you read his website & decided he was no one to vote for. i've met him, i've gotten to know him, and i've gotten to know people in his district who support him actively. i've met his friends and learned more about him that way. i've listened to people who've worked with him in his short but impressive career as an advocate for vital public issues.

    you read his website. wow. that's a real effort. almost as much work as you put into the mockery in your two posts.

  • Miles (unverified)

    his short but impressive career as an advocate for vital public issues.

    T.A., he's a corporate lawyer. I have nothing against corporate lawyers, but let's not conflate what Perkins Coie does as somehow advocating for "vital public issues."

    Both JTT and Samiv are right, the Medicare ad that Barton's been running is pure bullshit. He's counting on most Oregon voters being stupid enough to believe that he will be able to do something about it. He won't. The state legislature does not set Medicare reimbursement rates -- that will be Merkley's job -- and I'm not aware of any state in the nation that has passed a law requiring doctors to take Medicare patients. If Barton has a new groundbreaking national reform idea, he needs to be specific. Lacking that, he's blowing smoke.

    Doesn't mean that voters shouldn't pick him over Flores, but not all of us are such midless partisans that we're willing to ignore Barton's intellectually offensive campaign.

  • E.J. (unverified)
    <h2>Having know Brent Barton for a good portion of my life, and not always agreeing with his political views I can see how some people may have concern. But, I can tell you that Brent is not full of BS. He is a highly intelligent person and an even better friend. No matter what anyone thinks I can promise you this, when Brent says he is going to do something he does it and no one will out work him when it comes to accomplishing goals. I promise you Brent will be a success.</h2>
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