NBC5 Special Report: Political Controversy in Oregon Part 3

Medford, Ore. — All week long, we’ve been discussing controversy in politics, and how we’ve become more aware of the scandals over the decades as information becomes more accessible. In part 3 of our special report we hear from some of Oregon’s own congressional leaders on recent incidents in the state, and how we as voters can be more proactive in electing our public leaders.

“As the founding fathers rightly pointed out, eternal vigilance is what we need on the part of the citizens,” SOU professor Dr. Prakash Chenjeri says, “and we have to be informed citizens.”

It’s a presidential year, and races at the local and national level are heating up. So as we cast our ballots this spring and fall, how do we best vet each candidate?

“Senator Alan Simpson said it best,” RCC Political Science Instructor Michael Torguson says, “he said if you plan to run for public office you’ve gotta go all the way back and make sure there’s no lead in the diaper pins.”

Experts say voters must be informed, and hold all in public office to the same standard. We had some of Oregon’s congressional leaders weigh-in, and although on different sides of the aisle, Senator Ron Wyden, and Congressman Greg Walden say Oregonians hold their public officials to the highest of standards.

“History shows with very few exceptions,” Rep. Greg Walden says, “when you look at the total number of people who have served and the length of service, we haven’t had the kind of corruption that you see regularly in say a Chicago, or a New York or somewhere.”

“Oregonians are going to hold public officials accountable,” Sen. Ron Wyden adds, “that it’s a public trust and if you abuse it, you will face consequences.”

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