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Teens Question Oregon Gubernatorial Candidates

Oregon high school students posed questions on topics from foster care to gun restrictions to LGBTQ bullying during the first debate between the state's main gubernatorial candidates.

Posted: Oct 2, 2018 11:47 PM
Updated: Oct 3, 2018 10:04 AM

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Young people questioned Oregon's main gubernatorial candidates on topics ranging from foster care to gun restrictions to bullying at the candidates' first debate in Portland Tuesday evening.

Democratic Gov. Kate Brown, Republican Knute Buehler and Patrick Starnes of the Independent Party met at the event dubbed the Debate for our Future.

The candidates sparred most intensely over the topic of education funding specifically related to underrepresented groups such as Native Americans.

Buehler said the single biggest failure of Brown's administration was that not enough money was getting into the classroom because too much of it goes to state and local government employees' pension plans.

Brown said she was proud of a measure that allowed tribal elders to teach native languages in public schools to all students and that by significantly investing in underserved communities, graduation rates have gone up.

Later, 15-year-old Rose Lawrence from Portland repeatedly asked the candidates what they would do as governor to make schools safe for LGBTQ youth after saying she didn't think the candidates had answered her question.

Brown mentioned among other ideas an anti-bullying policy for safe and secure schools and encouraged students to speak out. Buehler said he'd continue the good work of Brown on the issue and said students should report bullying directly to the governor's office. Both mentioned hiring more teachers and counselors and those that better reflect a diverse population.

"I would hire you," Starnes told Lawrence to audience applause.

Buehler, a prominent Republican in the Oregon Legislature, beat two main rivals in the GOP gubernatorial primary. Buehler was the most centrist of the Republican front-runners.

Brown was first appointed governor in February 2015 after John Kitzhaber resigned. She easily was elected in her own right in 2016 to finish out the term of Kitzhaber, who resigned amid accusations of influence peddling involving his fiancee.

The next two debates are scheduled for Oct. 4 in Medford and Oct. 9 in Portland.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 189162

Reported Deaths: 2514
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah37544577
Washington25097229
Marion21585304
Clackamas16908209
Lane12676145
Jackson10649132
Deschutes846573
Umatilla812184
Linn473067
Yamhill436875
Klamath421861
Polk367852
Malheur349061
Josephine329068
Douglas320570
Benton300019
Jefferson215033
Coos204232
Columbia168526
Union143923
Lincoln136720
Wasco136428
Hood River117430
Morrow109815
Crook104520
Clatsop9668
Baker93814
Curry6409
Tillamook6323
Grant5014
Lake4437
Harney3338
Wallowa1805
Sherman581
Gilliam571
Wheeler261
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3753173

Reported Deaths: 62154
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles123474623977
Riverside2988724576
San Bernardino2963244677
San Diego2773233716
Orange2705694992
Santa Clara1186982084
Kern1088871367
Sacramento1040581670
Fresno1014911680
Alameda874071541
Ventura808121011
San Joaquin727841384
Contra Costa68279803
Stanislaus617761053
Tulare49514837
Monterey43506381
San Mateo41755567
San Francisco36577543
Santa Barbara34261453
Solano32698249
Merced31701454
Sonoma29951318
Imperial28295720
Kings22933246
Placer22532290
San Luis Obispo21243260
Madera16423242
Santa Cruz16062207
Marin14009228
Yolo13846209
Shasta12042226
Butte11907198
El Dorado10073111
Napa983381
Sutter9398111
Yuba621344
San Benito604663
Lassen569624
Tehama554558
Nevada467175
Tuolumne411564
Mendocino405948
Humboldt391539
Amador365047
Lake345843
Glenn238025
Colusa222416
Siskiyou215122
Calaveras211153
Inyo142538
Del Norte13637
Mono12794
Plumas7046
Modoc4944
Mariposa4457
Trinity3995
Sierra1120
Alpine880
Unassigned450
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