by NW Spotlight
As the May 2014 Republican Primary draws to a close – voting will end at 8pm on Tuesday, May 20 – two of the challenges that Dr. Monica Wehby is facing in her campaign for U.S. Senate are some potential legal issues and concerns over her unwillingness to debate.
Potential legal issues
On Monday, Democrats filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission over allegations of coordination between Dr. Monica Wehby’s campaign and a super-PAC funded in part by Andrew Miller – who is reportedly dating Wehby.
Wehby’s campaign denies the allegations “Our campaign has not coordinated with this group in any way. Anyone suggesting otherwise is making a false accusation.”
Jeff Mapes at The Oregonian also reported “The Democratic complaint also charged that the [super-PAC] failed to file all the required disclosure reports and didn’t always contain proper contact information in its advertising.”
According to The Oregonian, the political consultant for the super-PAC explained “the [super-PAC] had some problems listing its website in the advertising because the name had to be slightly changed after the website was hacked.”
The other potential legal issue facing Monica Wehby is a medical child-abuse case that accuses a woman of harming her children with unnecessary medical procedures – several of which were performed by Wehby, a pediatric neurosurgeon. The Oregonian notes “The case, which is scheduled for trial May 19, means Wehby’s work could be scrutinized on the eve of the primary vote.”
The Oregonian quotes Jim Moore, a Pacific University government and elections professor, on the case. He said “”It raises questions about her judgment, and for the last 25 years voters have said judgment is very important. And remember, she’s not very well known in this state. She’s staking her whole campaign on her expertise in health care and her competence. So this is going to raise questions about the center of who she says she is.” Moore added “Because of the nature of these kinds of things, if she wins the primary, this is going to stretch out during the entire campaign.”
Wehby and her campaign were unable to comment on the case, citing “HIPAA, a federal privacy law that prohibits doctors from disclosing patient information.”
Concerns over her unwillingness to debate
The Oregonian, who endorsed Monica Wehby, ran a scathing editorial titled “Wehby wimps out on televised debate” for refusing to participate in a KGW/Oregonian live debate with her principal opponent, Rep. Jason Conger. The editorial asked “if Team Wehby doesn’t consider her ready for the crucible of a live TV debate, why should Republican voters consider her ready for a race against incumbent Sen. Jeff Merkley?”
The debate would have been the only live televised debate of the primary race between the two.