PRESS RELEASE October 23rd, 2022 Contacts: Sara Guest, 503-952-6450 JESSICA VEGA PEDERSON AND SUPPORTERS DENOUNCE ATTEMPT TO BUY ELECTION
October 23, 2022
Portland, Ore. -- Today Jessica Vega Pederson, flanked by dozens of supporters, spoke out against the $180,000 independent expenditure that wealthy downtown property and business owners launched against her candidacy for Multnomah County chair. The expenditure funded a mailer sent to all voting residences in the county. Joined by community leaders, supporters, and a host of elected officials, Vega Pederson called out narrow interests of the backers to Meieran. “This is a small group of wealthy individuals trying to buy our election. Their goal is in contorting the outcome of this race to protect their own interests,” said Vega Pederson. “They want to sweep downtown, but if the homeless end up in neighborhoods like mine, then that’s just fine with them. They are trying to tear me down because they know that as Chair, I’ll fight for the whole county.” Video of the event can be found here. Vega Pederson was joined by Commissioner Carmen Rubio; Metro Councilors Shirley Craddick, Duncan Hwang, and Christine Lewis; state Representative Andrea Valderamma; former Democratic Senate Majority Leader Dianne Rosebaum; and over two dozen other supporters. The event took place in east Portland’s Hazelwood neighborhood, where Vega Pederson lives. Below are her full remarks. Having this press conference in East Portland was important to me because there is never enough attention to what life is like in East Portland and why we need leaders who will fight for the people who live here. But I always wonder, how many, if any, journalists and people in the media actually live in this part of the city? I know for certain that the big-money donors who are funding a hit piece against me definitely do not live in East Portland. And likely never even visit here. I do live here, in this neighborhood. Not in the West Hills. You can see by the number of RVs which shelter some of our neighbors here, that the reality of homelessness is something we experience everyday. This street we’re on is currently a construction zone, as the sidewalks East Portlanders have been promised for years are finally being installed. And yet, in living here for 17 years, I’ve attended too many vigils and know too many families whose loved ones have been hurt or killed on our dangerous roads. This month right over on Stark, 21-year old Asher Drain was killed by a car while walking to work. The month before that, 26-year old Ashlee McGill was killed while waiting for a bus by someone racing down the street. I’ve witnessed a shooting from my living room and talked with my neighbors about the bullet casings they find littering the streets. In East Portland we know food deserts and childcare deserts all too well. I know people are angry right now about the direction this city and county are going. What I’m here to tell you is that: this is anger that people in East Portland have felt for decades. I am proud to live in this community. To represent it and fight like hell for it. I’ve fought to raise the minimum wage and give front line workers like those who live here in East Portland paid sick leave. For better access to COVID tests and vaccines in a neighborhood that had some of the highest rates of COVID cases and deaths in the state. I’ve fought for sidewalks and crosswalks. For more housing and services for my neighbors who are at risk of being pushed even further out because of unbearable hikes in their rent. And I’ve fought for Preschool for All, because I know first-hand the financial burden for working families that paying for childcare and preschool brings, and the need to value the work done by preschool workers by paying them a living wage. But now we have rich special interests, the downtown real estate class, trying to undermine this election. In 2016, we passed campaign finance in Multnomah County with 89% of the vote. Voters were clear that they wanted the influence of big money out of elections. They don’t want millionaires able to buy our campaigns. Campaign finance limitations have impacted the amount of money we’ve been able to raise in the race significantly. Realistically, there isn’t enough money to pay full-time staff a living wage. But most significantly, there isn't enough money to engage with voters and that’s left a vacuum in how much voters know about this race and who I am. Into that vacuum comes big-money interests who are spending $180k on a mailer going out to every voting residence in this county. $180,000 is the amount I’ve raised in this entire race. These are using their millions to try to contort the message of this race. To back a candidate who doesn’t have my track record of creating big change. These millionaires are afraid of my coalition, because it’s a mighty one. It’s dozens of community leaders and organizations representing thousands of people, and it’s ready to get big things done… And they have my back because they know just how effective I am - that’s why those moneyed interests are scared of me. And despite their best efforts, I'm going to be the next Multnomah County chair. Because voters are craving strong leaders, not untested ones. Leaders with backbone, not those without accomplishment. Leaders who get results. Leaders like me. And I will be Chair working for our whole county. Of Gresham and Troutdale, or East Portland and Cully. Of St. John’s and Albina. And yes, of course, downtown too. So to those very rich people funding this mailer, know that after I win, I am ready to talk. Because I am always about bringing people together to break new ground and create real solutions. And that’s exactly what I’ll do as the next Multnomah County Chair. # # #READ MORE
"As county chair, I will treat our homeless situation as the emergency that it is."
This is an all-hands-on-deck moment for our community, but one that requires flexibility and adjustments. I won’t be afraid to change course, try something new, and partner with anyone willing to bring ideas, energy, or resources to the table, be they community groups, faith organizations, businesses, cultural organizations, or philanthropy. Policies that are working we will continue, and those efforts that aren’t delivering as we’d hoped will be discontinued. I’m proud to run for county chair on my track record, and put my skills to use tackling homelessness, gun violence, climate change, transportation and the other challenging issues facing our community. Working together, we can do great things.READ MORE
JVP's Vison for Multnomah County as an Incoming Commissioner
If you’re a voter in East Portland, chances are your choice for Multnomah County commissioner will be an easy one. State Rep. Jessica Vega Pederson is running unopposed for the county commissioner seat representing District 3, an area that extends roughly from Cesar Chavez Boulevard to Southeast 148th, bordered by Interstate 84 to the north and Clackamas County to the south. The first Latina elected to the House, Vega Pederson has spent the past four years representing District 47 in Salem, serving on the Joint Committee on Department of Energy Oversight, the House Committee on Judiciary, and as the Chair of the House Committee on Energy and the Environment. She will replace Judy Shiprack, who has served as county commissioner for District 3 since 2008.READ MORE
An intimidating list of endorsements for the competition
By Rachel Monahan September 21, 2021 at 6:19 pm PDT Three leading Oregon elected officials—Secretary of State Shemia Fagan, Labor Commissioner Val Hoyle and House Speaker Tina Kotek—as well as City Commissioner Carmen Rubio, Metro President Lynn Peterson and a slew of legislative leaders all have endorsed Multnomah County Commissioner Jessica Vega Pederson in the 2022 county chair’s race. It’s a formidable list of endorsements that also includes community leaders Rukaiyah Adams and traffic safety advocate Ashton Simpson, as well as the farmworkers’ union United Food and Commercial Workers Local 555.READ MORE
Former Gov. Barbara Roberts joins dozens of prominent state and local leaders endorsing Jessica Vega Pederson for Multnomah County Chair
September 21, 2021
Former Governor Barbara Roberts has joined dozens of prominent state and local leaders endorsing Jessica Vega Pederson for Multnomah County Chair. Vega Pederson’s impressive list of endorsers reflects her record of collaborative and committed public service and a clear vision for the future. Since announcing her campaign earlier this month, Vega Pederson has earned the support of leaders across the county and state — everyone from Portland City Commissioner Carmen Rubio to Oregon Labor Commissioner Val Hoyle to thousands of frontline workers at UFCW Local 555. “From school board to County Commission to Governor, I’ve served at nearly every level of Oregon government,” said Roberts, who served as a Multnomah County Commissioner before going on to become Oregon’s first woman Governor. “I know first hand that meaningful change is driven locally. Jessica Vega Pederson shares that belief and works to make it happen. She’s a true champion for our community and that is why I believe she’s the right person to lead Multnomah County into a new chapter as County Chair.” As the County Commissioner for District 3 since 2016, Vega Pederson has been a progressive champion for her community and has successfully passed landmark policies, including Preschool for All and a 100% Clean Energy resolution. Vega Pederson got her start in public service in 2012 when she became the first Latina elected to the Oregon House of Representatives. In the legislature, she championed the renewal of the Clean Fuels Program and Paid Sick Time for All. Vega Pederson’s record of fighting for working families helped her to earn the endorsements of UFCW Local 555. The union represents thousands of frontline essential workers who serve Multnomah County, including grocery, retail, manufacturing, and healthcare workers. "Jessica is a tireless champion for Oregon workers both on the job and in our communities," said Thomas Mosher, Government Affairs Director for UFCW Local 555. "We always know that we can count on Jessica to fight for what's right, and she has shown up and spoken out for our frontline essential workers throughout the pandemic. She's the leader we trust to deliver real change for working families.” Vega Pederson’s full list of endorsers is below: Former Gov. Barbara Roberts Oregon Secretary of State Shemia Fagan Oregon Labor Commissioner Val Hoyle Oregon House Speaker Tina Kotek UFCW Local 555 Reynolds School Board Member Ana Gonzalez Muñoz Portland City Commissioner Carmen Rubio Portland Public Schools Superintendent Guadalupe Guerrero Multnomah Education Service District Chair Jessica Arzate Mt. Hood Community College Board Chair Annette Mattson Metro Chair Lynn Peterson Metro Councilor Juan Carlos González David Douglas School Board Hoa Nguyen Portland Public School Board Chair Michelle DePass David Douglas School Board Member Stephanie Stephens Former House Majority Leader Jennifer Williamson Former State Representative Alissa Keny-Guyer State Representative Andrea Valderrama State Representative Courtney Neron State Representative Dacia Grayber State Representative Khanh Pham State Representative Karin Power State Senator Kayse Jama State Representative Teresa Alonso León Washington County Chair Kathryn Harrington Washington County Commissioner Pam Treece Meyer Memorial Trust CIO Rukaiyah Adams City of Roses Disposal & Recycling owner Alando Simpson Community leader Ashton Simpson Community leader Candace Avalos Community leader Duncan Hwang Community leader Ernesto Fonseca Community leader Sarah Iannarone Business leader Tom Kelly Community leader Tony DeFalco Jessica Vega Pederson and her husband Aaron live in East Portland in the Hazelwood neighborhood where they are raising their two children. She is currently the Multnomah County Commissioner for District 3, serving southeast Portland between SE Cesar Chavez Boulevard and SE 148th Avenue. ####READ MORE
Paid for and authorized by Friends of Jessica Vega Pederson, PAC ID 15330
Top Contributor: IBEW Local 48 Small Donor PAC, PAC ID 21625.
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