Gordon Smith Afraid to Face OR-Sen Candidate Merkley

During the primary race in Oregon there have been a number of signs that Republican Gordon Smith fears his possible Democratic opponent House Speaker Jeff Merkley. Whether it was his campaign’s decision to release their fundraising numbers early to counter the positive fundraising press the Merkley Campaign was receiving or his ridiculous email blast I wrote about yesterday. Now, Smith’s campaign is on the attack like never before and they’ve got their sights set on Oregon Senate candidate Merkley. Could this be another indication that the Smith Campaign does not want to face Jeff Merkley in November?

Republican Gordon Smith recently aired an attack ad against both Democratic primary candidates Jeff Merkley and Steve Novick. Now, Smith and right wingers are focusing their attention on Jeff Merkley. Besides the fact that the right wing hack bloggers like RINO WATCH endorsed Merkley’s primary opponent, Gordon Smith also just aired a very misleading ad against Jeff Merkley. In the ad Smith claims that Merkley “took thousands from lobbyists and special interests while in session.” The Merkley Campaign has sent out an email to its supporters completely denying the claim. Here’s a snippet from the email:

While Jeff Merkley refused to accept even a dime from lobbyists and special interests during the legislative session, Gordon Smith was raising money from lobbyists and special interests in Washington D.C. while the Senate was in session.

Jeff Merkley led historic bipartisan ethics reform to ban gifts from lobbyists, close the revolving door for legislators, and restore the independent Ethics Commission.  Merkley went beyond the rules for federal candidates and refused to accept any funds during session from lobbyists and special interests.

So, how much money has Gordon Smith raised from PACs this election cycle?   Gordon Smith has raised nearly 1.5 million from Pacs just this cycle alone. Check out how Gordon Smith matches up against both Jeff Merkley and Steve Novick when it comes to special interest donations. Gordon Smith has taken over $300,000 from the insurance industry, which tops his donor list. Smith has also raised nearly $175,000 from lobbyists while Merkley has only raised $5,100 and Novick $3,300. Now do you understand why we have to fight back against this? Gordon Smith is airing a misleading ad against a strong progressive candidate while he’s the one tied to special interests and lobbyists!!!!

Gordon Smith does not want to face Jeff Merkley

By leaving Steve Novick out of Gordon Smith’s latest negative ad campaign and focusing on Merkley, Smith is telling us he does not want to face Merkley in November. I wouldn’t blame him, considering Merkley is one of the most well rounded politicians I have ever supported. Merkley’s political beginnings started at the Defense Department, where he was a national security analyst. Merkley analyzed weapons programs and nuclear arms treaties for the Pentagon and Congress. When Merkley returned to Oregon he became the executive director for Habitat for Humanity. Merkley created affordable housing programs and Youthbuild which helped disaffected youth get back on their feet. After his community work, he was elected to the House to represent district 47. Merkley was elected Democratic House Leader in 2003 and then elected House Speaker back in 2006. He led the greenest and most labor friendly session in 30 years. Merkley was able to get a ton of progressive legislation passed, while Smith otoh has led on absolutely nothing as Senator. If I were Smith I wouldn’t want to go up against Merkley who has been able to deliver for Oregonians while Smith has given us nothing but a massive salmon kill.

Will you help Merkley fight back?

The Merkley Campaign has been incredibly effective in fighting back against such smears. We need to help the Merkley Campaign keep their message alive and not let Smith’s attacks go unanswered! I don’t know about you, but the fact that Smith is scared of Merkley is a good reason to support their campaign in any way you can. I set up an Act Blue page for Jeff Merkley and I hope you’ll consider donating to his campaign. Merkley can beat Smith, and there’s no doubt in my mind he will become a progressive champion for us in the Senate.  


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  1. a routine organization candidate isn’t likely the best bet to do the job.

    I can no longer vote in my old home state but relatives can. Hope they have the good sense to vote for a real maverick like the state of Oregon itself.

    You don’t often get a chance to vote for an upstart like Steve Novick, a throwback to the wonderful Wayne Morse.

    Youngsters here may not remember that Wayne Morse was one of only two members of Congress to vote against the Vietnam War.  That was his epitaph in politics but it leaves a great memory just as it was with Oregon being the only state to back Eugene McCarthy against Bobby Kennedy.

    All JMO.

    Best,  Terry

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