GOP Eyes Senate Race In Blue State Oregon
In an aggressive move, the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) issued a memorandum highlighting the GOP's widening 2014 Senate battle map into blue state stronghold Oregon.
The memo cited new polling that reveals first term Democratic Sen. Jeff Merkley is "incredibly vulnerable, far more so than most suspected." The poll, conducted by Harper Polling, found that Merkley's favorables are just 39% and under 50% on the ballot.
Oregon has not elected a Republican to statewide office in over a decade. Republicans, however, believe the GOP primary will produce a candidate who can beat Merkley in a state whose disastrous Obamacare exchange received $305 million in taxpayer-funded federal grants yet has failed to enroll a single Oregonian online.
With over $1 million already in her campaign war chest, Dr. Monica Wehby, a pediatric brain surgeon, "continues to astound and impress in Oregon," states the NRSC memo. Wehby's almost 30 years of experience in medicine give her a powerful platform from which to hammer away at Oregon's failed Obamacare exchange.
"Doctors are trained differently," says Dr. Wehby. "We know how to look at things logically, not ideologically, and we also know how to work with other people."
"It's not brain surgery," says Dr. Wehby in her latest campaign video. "Obamacare is bad for Oregon."
Also running in the GOP primary is state Rep. Jason Conger, a lawyer with a hardscrabble life story that took him "from homeless to Harvard," as his campaign video puts it.
"I still remember what it's like to live in a trailer park," says Conger who put himself through Harvard Law School. "I believe that I have the ability to relate to people who are not rich, to express conservative solutions, a conservative approach to solving problems in a way that...has relevance for their situation."
The eventual GOP nominee will face a well-funded Democratic candidate in Merkley, who has already raised $3.6 million. Still, with two attractive potential Republican challengers, the National Republic Senatorial Committee says Merkley is going to "need every cent."