Oregon State Economist: Legislature spent like ‘drunken sailors’ during short session


by NW Spotlight

During the June revenue forecast presentation yesterday in Salem, State Economist Mark McMullen referred to the Democrat-controlled Ways & Means committee as “drunken sailors” because they overspent during the 2016 ‘short session’, leaving the budget $74 million short of what was predicted.

Although the comment on the overspending was made in jest, it was still interesting to hear a high-level state employee make that kind of accusation – and there was certainly basis for his comment.

Here’s a clip of the “drunken sailors” comment:


Following yesterday’s forecast, Oregon House Republicans and Senate Republicans issued this joint statement:

Salem, OR – House Republican Leader Mike McLane (R-Powell Butte) and Senate Republican Leader Ted Ferrioli (R-John Day) issued the following joint statement regarding today’s revenue forecast:

“With today’s revenue forecast we learned that Oregon’s economy is not keeping up with current spending levels. Even with record revenues, our ending fund balance is expected to be $57.1 million below previous projections, largely due to overspending by Democrats during the 2016 session.

“Furthermore, endless new government mandates, billions of dollars in unfunded PERS liabilities, and the potential for a massive $6 billion tax on Oregon sales continues to threaten Oregon’s long-term economic health. The legislature will have to address these higher costs while facing less revenue due to an estimated 40,000 jobs lost from the minimum wage increase. The worst kept secret in Salem is that Democrats have put Oregon on an unsustainable fiscal path. Sooner or later, Oregonians are going to be left footing the bill for their recklessness.”