Moms Demand Action, Planned Parenthood PAC of Oregon, EMILY’s List and Others Call Out Johnson’s Out-of-Touch, Conservative Voting Record
[Portland, OR] – Advocates for gun violence prevention, reproductive rights, environmental issues, public education, and workers’ rights responded to Betsy Johnson submitting signatures to qualify for the ballot by slamming the long-time Senator’s conservative voting record, which is out of step with most Oregonians.
“The vast majority of Oregonians support gun safety and have NO INTEREST in moving the state backward by voting for someone like Betsy Johnson – an NRA ally with a voting record akin to the most extreme Republicans in the nation.”
“Meanwhile, both of Tina’s opponents oppose the Reproductive Health Equity Fund. Both of Tina’s opponents are using the same language being pushed by well-funded extremists who are creating a false panic about sex education and equity work in schools. Both voted against legislation in 2021 that would make sure reproductive health services are protected during healthcare mergers. In 2015, Betsy Johnson voted against a bill that helps patients keep their reproductive healthcare choices private ….
“We cannot take anything for granted. We know anti-abortion politicians and extremists will not stop until abortion is banned everywhere, including here. This election hugely impacts the future of our rights, freedom and health care. In this Post-Roe landscape, we need leaders who will be a champion for abortion access. Tina Kotek is the candidate Planned Parenthood PAC of Oregon trusts to defend and expand access to sexual and reproductive health care, including abortion, in our state.”
From EMILY’s List:
“In case you missed it, antagonistic and controversial Betsy Johnson is expected to appear on the November ballot as an unaffiliated candidate for Oregon governor, announcing her campaign has gathered the required signatures. Recent polls show Democratic nominee Tina Kotek and Republican nominee Christine Drazan neck and neck, with Johnson within striking distance.
A few things you need to know about Betsy Johnson:
- Don’t be fooled: Bridget Barton, who heads Republicans for Betsy, said Drazan and Johnson are “virtually identical” on issues of abortion access, at a time when anti-abortion extremists are actively working toward stripping away our right to choose.
- The company she keeps: For eight and half years, Johnson’s longtime legislative staffer espoused her hateful views online, targeting Black, Muslim, and LGBTQ+ people.
- Her record: In the Oregon State Legislature, Betsy repeatedly voted against common sense gun violence prevention measures, including a bipartisan 2017 red flag law.
- Refusal to take responsibility: In 2013, Johnson weaponized legislative immunity in the aftermath of a car accident of which she was at fault, passing the costs on to taxpayers.
“‘This November, it’s critical we stand behind Tina Kotek, whose long record of fighting for Oregonians speaks for itself. As House speaker, she shepherded one of the most consequential reproductive rights bills in the nation, while uplifting working families, combating our climate crisis and advocating for gun violence prevention. Her opponents, Christine Drazan and Betsy Johnson, are both out of touch and dangerous for Oregon,’” EMILY’s List spokeswoman Danni Wang said.
“Although she’s been raising millions of dollars from her corporate backers since the beginning of the year, Betsy Johnson has finally turned in signatures and officially entered the race for Oregon’s Governor,” said Doug Moore, OLCV Executive Director. Moore continued, “make no mistake, if Betsy Johnson is elected Governor, she would be a disaster for Oregon’s environment. In 2021, Johnson received a failing grade on OLCV’s Environmental Scorecard for the Oregon Legislature, and she even voted against transitioning Oregon to 100% clean electricity as well as protecting children from toxic chemicals, all the while cashing contribution checks from corporate polluters like the oil and gas industry.”
From Oregon Education Association:
“After 20 years of votes in the Oregon legislature, when asked for one vote that she would reverse if she could, Betsy Johnson said her biggest regret was supporting the Student Success Act. The law that provides critical funding for new and improved services for children and families, including additional instructional time, providing mental and behavioral health supports, reducing class size, implementing a more well-rounded education, fully funding High School Success (Measure 98), improving school safety and more.
“Qualifying for the ballot is easy but being qualified to be Oregon’s next governor is not. Betsy Johnson’s refusal to support our state’s public schools make her a poor choice for voters this fall.”
“While Betsy Johnson may have qualified for the November ballot, she’s not qualified to represent the interests of working people in Oregon. Her record of standing with corporations over the needs of workers speaks volumes about her priorities as a candidate for Governor.
“She voted against raising the minimum wage in Oregon in 2016, against public health funding in 2015, and against the state’s retirement plan for workers who don’t have employer-provided retirement plans in 2015. Her votes against the needs of working people and families don’t stop there, and we are committed to ensuring she is not elected as Governor of Oregon because we need a leader who fights for us, not against us.
“The Oregon AFL-CIO remains proud of our endorsement of Tina Kotek for Governor, as she’s shown us time and time again that she is the champion that working people and families in Oregon need. She has the leadership experience, vision, and values to be a strong pro-worker, pro-union Governor which is exactly what our state needs during this time of economic uncertainty.”