GRANTS PASS, ORE.- This morning Knute Buehler walked in today's Boatnik parade meeting voters. In May, Buehler secured the Republican nomination for Governor of Oregon.
Knute Buehler is challenging sitting Governor Kate Brown for the second time in his career.
In 2012, Buehler ran against Brown for the office of Secretary of State and lost. Six years later, Buehler says he can win. Buehler mentions since 2012, he's run two difficult elections in Bend and won a seat on the Oregon State House of Representatives in a Democratic district.
Buehler tells NewsWatch12 his viewpoints on hot topic issues cater to both Democrats and Republicans. As a moderate Republican, he's showing voters he can take office in a historically blue state.
Buehler touts that while serving in the legislature, he has a record of independent leadership and bipartisan results.
For a look at his voting history, click here.
On abortion, Buehler says he's pro-choice, but he's not pro-abortion.
The nominee says abortion should be done as rarely as possible, saying, "I wrote and passed a bill that would make contraception over the counter in Oregon the first state in the nation that allows it, and that is being copied now by a half dozen states across the country and I think that’s a goal no matter for pro life or for pro-choice that we can share is to try and make abortion as rare as possible."
On gun control, Buehler says he's pro-second ammendment.
He mentions growing up in rural Oregon with guns. As a gun owner now, Buehler realizes there is an issue that needs to be addressed. Buehler says it will take everyone on both sides of the aisle to fix the issue.
Buehler says, "It’s just not about gun control laws, it’s also about more mental health. It’s about more resources in our schools, and more mental health in our schools, more counselors, more school resource officers, and then more resources for law-enforcement."
On Oregon being a sanctuary state, Bueler says he voted against the sanctuary state bill last legislative session.
Buehler says, "I think we’ve gotten this concept all wrong. One, it was developed in the 1980s and it was to protect victims of crime no matter if you were here legally or illegally. Now we are protecting criminals because of the sanctuary state law and we need to change it we need to protect victims, not criminals."
Buehler adds education tops his list of priorities citing 25,000 students failed to graduate high school under Governor Brown. According to the Oregon Department of Education - Oregon's overall on-time graduation rate made a 2-point jump. The most recent performance report available shows 74.8% of students graduated in the four-year cohort in 2015-16.
Buehler mentions to NewsWatch12, Brown's single biggest failure in her time as Governor is her indifference to fixing public schools.
Governor Kate Brown and the Oregon Department of Education say they have, "explicitly focused on narrowing the opportunity gap to improve graduation rates by working directly with stakeholders and school districts to develop success plans for historically underserved students."
Governor Brown says she is dedicated to ensuring that students, communities and districts have what they need for all students to graduate with a plan for their future.