Alek Skarlatos, the Republican candidate for Oregon’s fourth congressional district, has outraised incumbent Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR) by $1.2 million during the most recent quarter.
Politico wrote that Skarlatos, the Army National Guard veteran who rose to national prominence after stopping a terrorist attack on a train in France in 2015, has outraised DeFazio, the 17-term congressman during the most recent quarter.
Skarlatos outraised DeFazio by $1.2 million and outspent the incumbent Democrat by nearly $1 million in the most recent quarter.
During a call with supporters this week, DeFazio said that Skarlatos is challenging the fourth most senior Democrat in the House, which could serve as an upset election in favor of the Republican challenger.
“I can’t outspend him. We can’t even match him. He raised more money in a quarter than I’ve ever raised in a year in my life. But we can outwork him,” DeFazio said.
DeFazio has won many of his election bids by a strong margin; however, Oregon’s fourth district has trended towards the Republicans in recent years.
A victory in Oregon’s fourth congressional district could help Republicans win back the House. Republicans need to retake a net 17 seats to regain the House majority.
Mark Wiener, an Oregon political strategist, told Politico, “It’s a district that when Peter decides to retire or move on, will probably be the most competitive district in Oregon. Skarlatos is a blank slate with a big checkbook, and the Republican establishment is pretty desperate for a win in someplace.”
“This is the kind of race where if you catch the incumbent napping, you can have an upset. Peter DeFazio doesn’t take naps,” he said.
Skarlatos has attacked DeFazio’s progressive credentials over supporting the Green New Deal, in which Skarlatos said the climate change program could decimate Oregon’s timber industry. The Republican candidate has also attacked DeFazio for wanting to defund the police.
Mike Leavitt, the top consultant for Skarltos’s campaign, said, “I do think people in Oregon are seeing it up and close and personal, unlike a lot of people in the country. I do think that is an issue that resonates with them.”
“I think people are just interested in a new face, in new ideas,” Leavitt said.
“Congressman Defazio has been in Congress longer than Alek has been alive,” he added.
Sean Moran is a congressional reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.