PORTLAND, OR -- The Democratic Party of Oregon is challenging the residency of Bend State Representative and Republican candidate for Governor, Knute Buehler. Party Chair Jeanne Atkins is calling for an investigation by the Secretary of State's Office after Buehler told KEX Radio host Mark Mason, in early July, he no longer lives in District 54.
In the interview from Tigard, Mason introduces Buehler as, "Knute Buehler of Tualatin, now." And, Buehler responds, "Of Tualatin now; yeah, just down the street." Mason confirms, "No longer Bend." And the candidate answers, "Yeah; and soon to be a resident of Salem." Mason ends the exchange with "Alright, we'll leave it at that." In June, Buehler told the Portland Tribune he'd recently moved to Tualatin, "Now we're living in an apartment."
Atkins says the move puts Buehler in violation of the state constitution, which says a Legislator must live in in the district from which they were elected.
Buehler was not available for comment, but issued a statement calling it a "meaningless, desperate attack." He says his wife spends most of her time at their Bend home, where they are registered to vote, pay property taxes and have their cars registered. Buehler says the Tualatin apartment provides him a home-base while campaigning in the Willamette Valley.