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Senate Republican Office 3/8/05.
AuCoin Appointment Re-ignites Timber War
SALEM ĖOn a partisan vote, Democrats in the Oregon Senate pushed the appointment of former Portland Congressman Les AuCoin out of a key committee and to the Senate floor today. Republicans expressed concern that the appointment will re-ignite the timber wars.
"This is a political appointment intended to re-energize the Governorís political base," stated Senate Republican Leader Ted Ferrioli (R-John Day). "We do not need Les AuCoin dictating forest policy to rural Oregonians."
Senate Republicans believe that Mr. AuCoin defines Governor Kulongoskiís thinking about natural resource management and the rural citizens of this state. They call this just another example of the Governor pandering to his supporters as his re-election bid heats up.
"If you believe bad news comes in threes, this Governor has one more coming," stated Ferrioli. "His appointment of Neil Goldschmidt to the State Board of Higher Education turned out to be a disaster and now we have a liberal radio commentator with an agenda. Oregonians should worry about what this Governor might do next."
AuCoin, a retired nine-term congressman from Oregonís First Congressional District, was a vocal supporter of Ballot Measure 34 in 2003 which would have taken more than 50% of state forest land out of production. He has also stated his opposition to the plan to salvage timber destroyed in the Biscuit Fire. The plan would have provided hundreds of jobs to rural Oregonians. Groups backing AuCoin are the same groups that pushed Measure 34 last fall.
With Mr. AuCoinís nomination passing out of the Senate Rules Committee, his appointment now heads for a full vote of the Senate. The vote could come as early as Thursday and will likely spark a bi-partisan opposition.
Page Updated: Thursday May 07, 2009 09:14 AM Pacific
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