Rep. Courtney Neron, D-Wilsonville, appears to have held onto her Oregon House seat by defeating Republican challenger Jason Fields in the race to represent the district covering Sherwood and Wilsonville.
In partial returns tallied as of 10 p.m., Neron had garnered 54% to Fields’ 46%.
Neron, a high school French and Spanish teacher, raised and spent more than four times as much as Fields, a small business owner. The race for House District 26 stands out as only one of two in the House where Democratic incumbents so vastly outspent their opponents.
More broadly, state and national Republicans pumped unprecedented money into Oregon House races this year in a bid to undermine Democrats’ supermajority, which has allowed that party to set the legislative agenda and pass tax bills without Republican support for the past four years. Largely in response to Republican spending, Democrats funneled significant amounts of money into key candidates’ races to try to hold their ground.
Of the nearly 48,000 voters in the district, 34% are registered Democrats and 26% registered Republicans.
Fields sells tow trucks and manufacturers parts for Volkswagen bugs and buses. He campaigned on platforms of fully funding police, keeping “homelessness out of our communities,” freezing property taxes for people over 65, opposing new taxes on small businesses and opposing any gun law that “goes against our Constitution and our 2nd Amendment.”
Neron said her top priorities were preventing gun violence, protecting abortion rights, expanding mental health care, providing services to prevent homelessness, supporting public education, making child care and housing more affordable and addressing climate change.
Statewide, campaign strategists predicted ahead of Tuesday’s results that Republicans would ride a wave of public discontent with the direction of the state under Democratic rule. Republicans, who currently hold 23 of the House’s 60 seats, need to gain at least two seats to end Democrats’ supermajority.
Whether Republicans have succeeded at that goal will become clear in coming days, as complete results are tallied in tight races.
OREGON ELECTION 2022: Live Results Page | Election page
— Aimee Green; firstname.lastname@example.org; @o_aimee