BEND, OR -- Dr. Knute Buehler and Craig Wilhelm - both running for State Representative for District 54 (Bend) - have been criticized by some for being too similar. Wilhelm and Buehler both are pro-choice, pro-OSU Cascades ... both agree on the need to create jobs and to support schools and education. So KBND asked them how they differ.
Dr. Buehler, a Republican, says Wilhelm has a long history of partisan activity. "My campaign is really idea driven - and if you look and compare our positions, just look at the different websites and the level of detail and ideas coming from the Buehler campaign is really different." He adds, "Our level of experience and connections to this community - I've lived in this community almost 20 years - I've started businesses here, I've raised my kids here."
Wilhelm, a Democrat and local business owner, says his real world experience from the military makes him a proven leader. "I've led in combat. I've led through very adverse conditions where there was limited resources and we had many different organizations and commanders vying for those limited resources. So, it was making sure that we brought everyone to the table and reached very critical compromises." Dr. Buehler has accused Wilhelm of being too partisan. Wilhelm says he is a "proud Democrat," but he's not afraid to buck party trends to do what's right for Central Oregon.
To listen to our full conversations with both candidates, visit our podcast page: https://kbnd.com/podcasts/your-town