Republican newcomer Tracy Cramer appears to win House seat stretching from Woodburn to Salem

Republican Tracy Cramer, who has never held public office, appears to have defeated Woodburn school board member Anthony Medina, the Democratic nominee, to win House District 22 covering Woodburn, Northeast Salem and other parts of Marion County.

In partial returns tallied as of 8:45 p.m. Tuesday, Cramer was leading Medina 53% to 47%.

OREGON ELECTION 2022: Live Results Page | Election page

The pair were competing for the open seat vacated by Democrat Teresa Alonso Leon, who gave up a reelection attempt to launch what turned out to be an unsuccessful bid for U.S. Congress.

Republicans this election cycle pumped unprecedented money into Oregon House races 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 in an effort to hold their ground.

The race between Medina and Cramer exemplified that phenomenon, with total spending between the two exceeding $1.6 million. As of Monday, Medina outraised Cramer with about $850,000 in contributions compared to Cramer’s $775,000. Their respective parties’ major PACs were responsible for contributing more than half of those funds.

Medina is a state education policy analyst. Cramer lists her occupations as both stay-at-home mom and small business owner. About 20% of the district’s voters are Republicans, compared to 28% Democrats.

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 rule.

Whether Republicans have succeeded at that goal will become clear in coming days, as complete results are tallied in tight races.

— Aimee Green;; @o_aimee

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