SEVERE WX : Air Stagnation Advisory View Alerts
STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Oregon Secretary of State candidate drops out ahead of campaign finance story

Former state House Majority Leader Jennifer Williamson announced the end of her campaign on Monday, citing an unnamed 'story being pushed in the media.'

Posted: Feb 10, 2020 5:17 PM
Updated: Feb 10, 2020 5:36 PM

SALEM, Ore. — One of the Democratic contenders for Oregon's Secretary of State announced that she would suspend her campaign on Monday, making vague reference to a story about her use of campaign funds.

Former state House Majority Leader Jennifer Williamson posted the announcement to her campaign's Facebook early Monday afternoon.

"Sadly, a story currently being pushed in the media is designed to question my use of campaign funds and unfairly attack my integrity," Williamson said. "Let me be clear, I have always followed Oregon campaign finance laws and fully reported all expenditures for travel and other expenses while fulfilling my responsibilities as House Democratic Majority Leader and fact-finding as a state legislator. In fact, I often used campaign dollars in place of taxpayer dollars."

While it was not immediately clear what story Williamson was referencing, Portland publication Willamette Week later said that it had been working a story regarding the politician's campaign expenditures.

"Politics is nothing new to me and I fully expected at least a few bruising fights over the course of this important election for Secretary of State," Williamson continued. "What I didn't expect was a baseless story that questions my integrity, that of my family, and the legal use of campaign funds. I won't allow my family to be put through this."

An article posted by the Willamette Week following Williamson's announcement did not go into further detail about the story in question. Public records do indicate that Williamson's campaign paid for more than $32,000 in airfare between March 2014 and August 2019, The Oregonian/OregonLive reported — which included trips to Europe, Asia, and Hawaii.


RELATED: Race for Oregon Secretary of State heats up with third major candidacy


Williamson said that she would suspend her campaign ahead of the March 10 filing deadline, in hopes "that another truly progressive leader will be able to step into" the primary.

Current state Senator Mark Hass, 2018 Walden challenger Jamie McLeod-Skinner, and former Marine officer Cameron Smith remain in the race for the Democratic nomination. Both Hass and McLeod-Skinner expressed a certain level of sympathy for Williamson in posts to social media following her announcement.

"I know today must be difficult for Jennifer Williamson," Hass said. "I wish her the best and hope she can return to public service someday."

"Jennifer Williamson has a tremendous track record of advocating for women, families, and criminal justice reform. Oregon is a better state for her work," McLeod-Skinner said.

Republican state Senator Kim Thatcher recently announced her candidacy for the Secretary of State post — the only Republican candidate so far. Thatcher launched her campaign at the latest "Timber Unity" rally in Salem, later indicating that she had received an endorsement from the group.

Secretary of State is currently the only statewide office in Oregon held by a Republican. The late Dennis Richardson was the last to win the seat through an election, and current Secretary Bev Clarno was appointed to fill the position following his death. Clarno, a former Republican Speaker of the House and Senator, came out of retirement to assume Richardson's role and has not filed to run for election in 2020.

"I'm excited to carry on Secretary Richardson's legacy of an accountable and transparent government for us all, regardless of political party," Thatcher said in a post last week.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 68503

Reported Deaths: 867
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah15561230
Washington940198
Marion8650135
Clackamas568777
Umatilla421248
Lane405040
Jackson357925
Malheur234942
Deschutes207414
Yamhill161516
Linn131019
Polk114015
Douglas88217
Jefferson79811
Union7463
Klamath7454
Benton7447
Morrow6357
Lincoln60014
Wasco49719
Josephine4824
Columbia4573
Coos4061
Hood River3751
Clatsop3450
Baker2703
Crook2086
Grant1301
Curry1202
Tillamook1150
Lake1131
Harney901
Wallowa703
Sherman230
Gilliam210
Wheeler30
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1171802

Reported Deaths: 19025
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles3832757580
San Bernardino884691129
Riverside850771434
San Diego75307988
Orange731521559
Kern39990448
Fresno37349477
Sacramento35739566
Santa Clara32454476
Alameda28378502
San Joaquin25675502
Contra Costa23381260
Stanislaus21145422
Tulare20550308
Ventura18914175
Imperial15725356
San Francisco15053160
Monterey14695116
San Mateo13707170
Sonoma11846157
Merced11537179
Santa Barbara11205135
Kings1044087
Solano1003681
Marin7628129
Placer622468
Madera604785
San Luis Obispo595635
Shasta460147
Yolo456174
Santa Cruz420228
Butte385359
Sutter314415
Napa294517
El Dorado21544
Yuba198110
San Benito181316
Lassen17733
Tehama158725
Mendocino148522
Nevada11839
Tuolumne9088
Glenn8918
Lake88619
Humboldt8199
Colusa6946
Siskiyou6242
Mono5243
Amador48416
Calaveras47522
Del Norte3131
Inyo29016
Plumas2050
Trinity1390
Mariposa1262
Modoc1220
Alpine470
Sierra190
Unassigned00
Medford
Clear
37° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 28°
Feels Like: 33°
Brookings
Clear
46° wxIcon
Hi: 57° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 46°
Crater Lake
Clear
30° wxIcon
Hi: 43° Lo: 21°
Feels Like: 30°
Grants Pass
Clear
34° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 28°
Feels Like: 34°
Klamath Falls
Clear
30° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 17°
Feels Like: 30°
Cold & foggy mornings, air quality concerns
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events