Government and Politics

Oregon lawmakers are rushing to beat a Tuesday deadline for legislation to advance. But there's an old saying around the state capitol: No bill is truly dead until the final gavel falls.

A.J. Balukoff / http://www.ajforidaho.com/

Balukoff began the hour-and-a-half back-and-forth by introducing himself as a successful businessman and longtime Boise school trustee. Otter touted his administration’s fiscal responsibility, and Bujak attempted to paint himself as an alternative candidate who would change the way Idaho government works.

By the end of the forum, the three had touched on Idaho’s economy, school funding, the state of its roads and bridges, a prison scandal, and more.

OregonDOT / Flickr

The race for Oregon governor was supposed to be predictable. An incumbent Democrat is running in a state that hasn't elected a Republican as governor since 1982. But this campaign hasn't exactly followed the script.

Actually, the campaign did follow the script most of the way. You had the incumbent governor, John Kitzhaber, announcing his re-election campaign in an elementary school library.

"Today I am announcing my candidacy for another term as governor of the state of Oregon," Kitzhaber said.

Photo credit: Wikimedia user Jay8g / Wikimedia Commons

California billionaire Tom Steyer is poised to help Democrats try to win back control of the Washington Senate. But first, his NextGen political action committee had to satisfy a quirk in the law. Call it the ten-ten rule. In Washington, political committees have to jump a small hurdle before they can play in Washington’s political sandbox.

Washington State Legislature / http://www.ltgov.wa.gov/

Washington Lt. Gov. Brad Owen has agreed to a $15,000 ethics fine. The settlement announced Friday stems from the five-term Democrat’s use of state resources to operate a non-profit with his wife.

Kevin Mooney / Northwest News Network

A group of Oregonians will meet this week in Salem to figure out where they stand on an upcoming ballot measure. It's called the Citizens’ Initiative Review, and it's been a part of the Oregon election process since 2010. This Oregon-based exercise in democracy is expanding to two more states this year.

Oregon Treasurer Can't Seek Re-election

Aug 12, 2014
Oregon State Treasury

Oregon's attorney general issued an opinion this week that said Democrat Ted Wheeler is not eligible to win election to a second four-year term. That's thanks to an unusual sequence of events that landed Wheeler in office in the first place.

Kevin Dooley / Flickr

A divided county council in Pierce County, Washington voted Tuesday to display the motto "In God We Trust" in its chambers. That makes it the first jurisdiction in the Northwest to become part of a national campaign to feature the motto. Correspondent Tom Banse reports the approval came with a twist.