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This past weekend I took my listening tour to Central Oregon, visiting Bend, Redmond, Tumalo, Warm Springs, and several towns in-between. I am exploring a run for Governor of Oregon because it's time for Oregon to have leaders who will regularly visit all parts of our state, and who will use the state's resources to empower our communities to find greater success and to thrive.
On my latest listening tour stop, I saw firsthand the energy and passion of Central Oregonians - for new a generation of leadership with fresh ideas and innovative solutions to our state's problems. And I shared my vision for how we must act boldly to move Oregon forward.
Deschutes Democrats told me how they want their leaders to stand up for common sense environmental protections. I agree, and that is the reason I championed the landmark preservation of Central Oregon's Metolius River. I will always fight to protect Oregon's most special, natural places.
Farmers in Tumalo and growers at the Bend Farmer's Market pleaded for greater state support and better economic investment. We can't forsake Oregon's agricultural livelihood, as future generations will depend on it. I'm exploring a run for Governor because it's time to think creatively and locally. Economic development shouldn't only mean tax breaks for out-of-state corporations. We should do more to support innovative local entrepreneurs and farmers - folks like Blue Sky Hydroponics - who use Oregon ideas and Oregon talent to create jobs and build the economy of the future.
And I saw the importance the state can make in the lives of our children if we work together, urban and rural Oregonians, toward a better future. In Bend, I ate lunch with local school kids who enjoyed fresh fruits and vegetables through their Farm to School program. By connecting rural growers with urban school districts, we win on both ends: we support Oregon farming jobs and Oregon's children. That's why I authored the first statewide Farm to School bill, and that's why I will always work to bring Oregonians together with solutions like these.
I'm traveling across Oregon on this listening tour and exploring a run for Governor for one simple reason: we need a leader who will truly listen to the experts, everyday Oregonians, and who will act on their needs. Whether you live in urban Portland or rural Tumalo, I know that you have the ideas we need to move our state into the future. Please visit this site often to follow our progress or make a donation, and please e-mail me with your ideas on how we can get our state back on track.
Next weekend I will be in Corvallis and Eugene, bringing my listening tour to the people of the Willamette Valley. Please visit our website throughout the week for updates on my campaign stops - I'd love to see you out there and hear from you. Your fresh ideas and your involvement are Central to Oregon's future.
p.s. Keep my listening tour going - make a grassroots donation today so we can reach out to every part of our great state.