BEND, OR -- Several seats have been vacated this year in the Oregon legislature, with new Senators and Representatives appointed to fill them, all who will eventually face election by vote.
District 54 Representative Knute Buehler says there's been more turnover than usual. "It's going to be an interesting transition in the short legislative session, where we have people who've moved out of the legislature, either to take other jobs, or moved, for example from the House to the Senate with Senator Ferrioli's position open, we expect that Representative Cliff Bentz will fill that role. So a lot of switching of chairs."
Buehler says it's a good practice to have turnover in the legislature, as it leads to new, and better, ideas.
These newly minted lawmakers are finishing out terms, and then they must be elected in order to keep their positions and Buehler says there's real benefit to legislative turnover. "In one way, it's good. It's good to refresh the legislature, get new members with new ideas, and I have to admit that the people I've met, the ones who are filling these positions, are very impressive people, so we're doing a good job in terms of getting high quality people to come into the legislature. And people who are motivated are going to work hard on a lot of important issues facing Oregon."
Buehler is vacating his District 54 seat at the end of his term because he is running for Governor against incumbent, Kate Brown.