Oregon Unions Spend $2.3 Million on Elections

Oregon’s three largest public sector unions spentmore than $2.3 million in forced-dues money to elect hand-picked candidates, and sway ballot initiatives.  And that was just in the past two months.  Hannah Hoffman has the story in the Statesman Journal.

The unions collectively oppose Measure 90, which would allow for an open primary election, and they support Measure 88, which would allow undocumented Oregon residents to obtain state-issued cards allowing them to drive.

Earlier in the fall, Service Employees Union International Union Local 503 and American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 75 donated $75,000 and $50,000, respectively, to Gov. John Kitzhaber’s campaign.

Oregon Education Association government relations director Trent Lutz created a committee called “Don’t Let Bill Post Embarrass Us” on Oct. 16 that is exclusively funded by OEA, SEIU Local 503 and AFSCME Council 75 and is targeting Post.

The unions have donated $20,000 and sent out at least three aggressively negative fliers quoting newspaper articles, editorials and Post’s own Twitter account and radio show.

One calls Post a “ticking time bomb” and another quotes him as saying “god chose Hitler.”
That committee is in addition to $8,300 Lee received from AFSCME and the $4,500 SEIU spent on polling for his campaign.

SEIU, the state’s largest public employee union, has put thousands into polling and advertising for candidates. It has made cash donations as well, but much of the money it has spent has been given for specific purposes.