‘There will be one throat to choke, OK?’: Oregon politics, the week in quotes

April 28, 2014

By Katherine Driessen at The Oregonian

Here are quotes worth noting from the week in Oregon politics:

  • “It’s easy to define you guys. It’s harder to define the softer fringe.” — State Ethics Commission Executive Director Ron Bersin, referring to the commission’s attempts to define who is a journalist for purposes of state public meetings law.
  • “Dennis Richardson could be a raging liberal, but you bet by the time the Democrats and public unions are done with him, he’s the most far-right raging conservative you’ve ever heard of. They are going to create an effigy of Dennis Richardson using his voting record, then they’re going to burn that effigy.” — House Minority Leader Mike McLane, on Richardson’s bid for governor.
  • “There will be one throat to choke, OK? With a head on it.” — Alex Pettit, the state’s top information technology officer, on a position that will be created to oversee the transfer of the Oregon Health Plan and the troubled health exchange’s transfer to the federal one.
  • “Are you asking me to tell voters they went through a hollow exercise?” — U.S. District Judge Michael McShane during last week’s hearings on a case that could overturn Oregon’s ban on same-sex marriage. McShane was asking about the message a court ruling would send about the 2004 voter decision to put the ban in state constitution.
  • “We are asking you to make a statement that we don’t get to vote on peoples’ constitutional rights.” — Sheila Potter, a top official in the office of Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum, in response to McShane.
  • “I don’t know everything about beer, but I know when a federal agency has had one too many.” — U.S. Senator Ron Wyden announcing that the federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau had backed off a previous ruling that selling wine in refillable containers was illegal unless a business had a bottling license.
  • “Never. I never planned to be doing this. When I started my 20 years at Goodyear, I’d already been at H&R Block for 15. I’d planned to work until 65, retire, clean out the garage and read all the books I never got around to.” —0 Lilly Ledbetter to The Oregonian on becoming a champion for the gender-pay cause.
  • “It is time to once and for all to say no to coal exports from the Pacific Northwest.” — Gov. John Kitzhaber, at the League of Conservation Voters,taking his boldest stance yet against a proposed coal export terminal at the Port of Morrow in Boardman.
  • “There is this creeping sense that it is a university’s job to protect its students from being offended. It’s not. A university is a haven of free ideas.” — Peter Bonilla, a program director at the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education,which claims Lewis & Clark College overreacted when it disciplined two students for using racially offensive language during a small dorm room party.

Schools: Lewis & Clark College Cases: Lewis & Clark College: Two Students Guilty of ‘Harassment’ for Racial Jokes at Party