Thursday, December 14, 2006

The losers of Washington County

The grand old daddy of Oregon's Grand Old Party lays out some strategic advice for the election weary losers in his brood:

What's important is to learn lessons from defeat. From my own experience, I learned far more from my losses than from my victories -- but only when I looked at them honestly and openly. So, perhaps I can start the conversation with a few observations and suggestions for Republicans here in Oregon as we regroup and plan.

Vic Atiyeh is the last Oregon Republican to be elected governor in Oregon and left that office in 1987, almost TWENTY YEARS AGO.

Atiyeh is essentially telling his party to stop nominating hardcore righties, quit letting ideology be the answer to everything--get some real policy ideas--and no more ceding Washington County to the D's.

For those GOPers who give a rip about ever winning again in this state: you'll have to accomplish the first two before you can have a shot at the third.

As a resident of Washington County since the mid-90s, I've lived and worked here long enough to understand the transformation of this geography from purplish red to purplish blue.

Part of the change has to do with population growth. More people are coming here and with a more urbanized population comes a more progressive political mindset, in general. But there is also a strong commitment to the public schools in Washington County, especially in Beaverton. There's a feeling among many residents here that the GOP is doing everything in their power short of C-4 explosives to level the public school system.

Many in Washington County believe that the Oregon Republican Party has broken faith with the citizens. They've lost touch with what really matters to Oregonians in this part of the state.

Its going to take awhile to patch that up.

Unless the GOP is really willing to undergo a serious transformation and demonstrate that they have policy solutions that reflect the priorities of people that aren't just east of the Cascade Mountains, they're going to continue to lose in Washington County.