Rep. Helfrich: Campaign finance reform bill signed

Leader Helfrich’s Remarks as Prepared for Campaign Finance Reform Signing Ceremony

By Oregon House Republican Office Leader
State Representative Jeff Helfrich,

SALEM, Ore. – Good afternoon, Thank you to Gov. Kotek for inviting me to join you today for this bill signing. And thank you to my fellow legislative leaders and to our colleagues for the work that we all put into this important bill that will bring more fairness and transparency to Oregon’s elections.

Going into this Short Session, we knew that Oregon faced some big challenges. And we knew that the people we serve expected us to get things done. We were able to do that this Short Session and make progress on several important issues – including the drug crisis, housing, and the reason we’re here today: Campaign finance reform.

Republicans and Democrats put partisanship aside to seek consensus on how to check the unlimited flow of money influencing Oregon’s politics. I want to thank Speaker Fahey for her leadership and willingness to work together to get this bill across the finish line.

Everyone deserves the chance to participate in our democracy. It is not an exercise only for the rich and powerful. In fact, a thriving democracy depends on an active and engaged citizenry who have faith that their vote matters. And that faith is shaken if people question whether their voice will be heard or drowned out in a sea of spending by rich, powerful, and well-connected special interests.

I want the people of Oregon to know that Republicans hear you, and that is why I helped negotiate this bill. This bill places reasonable limits on campaign donations – creating a more level playing field so that the insiders must play by the same rules as everybody else. It shines a light on dark money with stronger disclosure rules so that people can know when shadowy groups try to buy our elections. And it ensures that every Oregonian has a voice in Oregon’s political process.

House Republicans remain committed to solving Oregon’s big problems, and we look forward to future opportunities to seek bipartisan agreement that moves our state forward, as we have done with campaign finance reform.