SALEM, Ore. – Oregon Governor Kate Brown has authorized Oregon State Police to bring Republicans back to the State Senate.
Earlier this week, Democrats called upon the governor to do everything in her power to bring Republicans back to the table after they effectively “walked out” in protest of climate legislation.
“After many hours of well-intentioned, respectful negotiations on Wednesday, the Senate has come to an impasse,” Governor Brown said. “The Senate Republicans have decided to abandon their duty to serve their constituents and walk out. The Senate Democrats have requested the assistance of the Oregon State Police to bring back their colleagues to finish the work they committed to push forward for Oregonians. As the executive of the agency, I am authorizing the State Police to fulfill the Senate Democrats’ request. It is absolutely unacceptable that the Senate Republicans would turn their back on their constituents who they are honor-bound to represent here in this building. They need to return and do the jobs they were elected to do.”
The situation in the state legislature is largely attributed to the party-line disagreement over House Bill 2020, described by Republicans as a “job-killing” cap-and-trade bill.
Democrats, however, see the legislation as necessary to reduce the production of greenhouse gasses in the state.
After passing through the Joint Committee on Ways and Means, HB 2020 passed through the House, leaving the Senate as the only thing preventing the legislation from becoming established Oregon law.
Many Republicans decided walking out of the Senate was the only way to stop the bill. “Walking out is part of the conversation because the governor is not willing to move on her position on the bill,” said Grants Pass Republican Herman Baertshiger, Jr. “She is only representing Portland and the environmental community, not rural Oregonians.”
You can read HB 2020 here: https://olis.leg.state.or.us/liz/2019R1/Measures/Overview/HB2020