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Jason Conger: Oregon’s Tipping Point Conservative

Reagan and Conger


Every year since 1976, except 2008, the number of Democrats in Oregon has dropped, yet establishment-type Republican candidates continue to lose in the Beaver State.

Since 1988 Oregon has voted Democratic in every presidential election; Mitt Romney ran away with the Oregon Republican Primary in 2012, yet Barack Obama defeated Mitt Romney 937,321 to 733,743 in the general election.

But Oregon hasn’t always been so reliably Democratic – Ronald Reagan won Oregon in both 1980 and 1984.

Why has Oregon gone from being Reagan country to being reliably Democrat?

As I observe in my new book TAKEOVER, grassroots conservatives voters just plain don’t like establishment Republicans – and that certainly goes for Oregon’s liberty minded conservative grassroots. They see them as elitist, principle-free “Democrats-lite,” and if an election becomes a bidding war for favors from Big Government the Democrats almost always beat the establishment Republicans.

That means to win, Oregon’s Republicans have to start nominating a different kind of candidate, one that is not going to campaign as a “dime store Democrat” or defend the unpopular inside the Beltway status quo in Washington.

In other words, Republicans need to nominate candidates like boat rocking conservative Jason Conger.

Conger, a state legislator and attorney who worked his way from living out of the back of his father’s truck to graduating from Harvard Law School is campaigning, as he put it, to “stand up for all Oregonians, not just the privileged and well connected.”

His opponent in the Republican Primary is Dr. Monica Wehby, a pediatric brain surgeon who has never sought elective office, but who was anointed by the establishment Republican string-pullers in Washington as “the most electable” candidate to take on incumbent Democratic Senator Jeff Markley.

As pointed out, some “40 percent of Monica Wehby’s itemized contributions have come from out-of-state, suggesting conservatives in her own state are not too enthralled with her policy stances.“

Naturally, the GOP establishment has done its best to avoid campaiging on the issues and the final days of the campaign are being driven by a massive negative TV campaign funded by a few millionaires on behalf of their establishment pal Monica Wehby.

However, it looks like the Beaver State’s conservative grassroots have finally had enough of Big Government Republicanism and the Washington establishment’s idea of who is “the most electable.” 

Fred Barnes writing in The Wall Street Journal has just revealed that Conger is quickly gaining on the establishment backed Republican candidate and a week before the Oregon primary polling data shows that he would be a better matchup with Marley in the November general election.

“...a week ago, came a poll with two big surprises. A Republican survey firm, Harper Polling, found that Mr. Merkley is more vulnerable than expected. He has a 39% favorability rating. On the generic ballot question, a Democratic candidate for the Senate was favored by just three percentage points over a Republican.”

“The other surprise: Mr. Conger, according to the poll, fared better against Mr. Merkley than Ms. Wehby did. He trailed the senator, 47%-40%. She was behind, 46%-34%. And that wasn't the only bad news for Ms. Wehby. The poll showed that she was less popular among Republican voters than Mr. Conger”

The only problem with the Republican establishment’s determination of who is “the most electable” is that it is based on the same ideas and analysis that has gotten the Republican presidential candidate defeated in Oregon in every election since Ronald Reagan was last on the ballot.

Jason Conger is not the DC establishment candidate – instead he has been endorsed by conservative leaders across the state and conservative grassroots organizations, including Oregon Right to Life and the Oregon Firearms Federation. 

The Oregon Senate Republican Primary may be a tipping-point election in which grassroots conservative voters, who have had enough of the DC Republican establishment, finally throw-off the yoke of Big Government Republicanism. 

Jason Conger clearly represents the values of the GOP grassroots, unlike his opponent, and most importantly, is willing to rock the boat to advance them – we are proud to endorse Jason Conger for Senate in the Oregon Republican Primary.

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