Brent Barton’s support for Jefferson Smith is troubling

Promote Oregon Leadership PAC

“There’s never a justification for hitting a woman” – Treasurer Ted Wheeler

SALEM– Oregon House Republicans today challenged House District 40 Democrat Nominee Brent Barton to withdraw his support for Portland Mayoral Candidate Rep. Jefferson Smith (D-Portland) in wake of allegations Smith struck and injured a woman at a 1993 party.

Smith has lost support from a number of public safety unions, special interest groups and Democrat politicians, yet Barton remains prominently listed as a supporter.

“As Treasurer Ted Wheeler tweeted last week, there’s never a justification for hitting a woman,” said Nick Smith of Promote Oregon Leadership PAC. “We couldn’t agree more, which is why we’re puzzled Brent Barton remains such a strong supporter of Jefferson Smith. If Barton truly believes violence against women is a serious issue, he would follow the others in dropping his support. Better late than never.”

Republicans say Barton’s support for Smith is especially troubling, considering both also voted to pass 2009 legislation granting early release for violent offenders.

“Barton’s support for Jefferson Smith, along with his support for early release, raises serious questions about his record on public safety issues,” Smith said. “While Barton’s attack ads can’t conceal his record of letting violent criminals out of jail, he can still withdraw his support for Jefferson Smith just as Portland police and firefighters have done.”