Recently I tried to jump-start the discussion at the beginning of a meeting of like-minded liberals on a pleasant Saturday afternoon.
"In the upcoming election, what outcome would make you the most unhappy? For me, it would be Republican Christine Drazan being elected Oregon governor, because she'd take our state backwards in so many ways."
I still feel that way, though I had to agree with someone that the Democrats losing control of the U.S. Senate would be dreadful also.
But Drazan coming out on top over Democrat Tina Kotek still ranks as my #1 November 8 horror. That's because I'd have to endure four years of Drazan standing in the way of efforts to move Oregon forward, and doing her best to move Oregon backward.
Backward to loosening environmental protections, undoing commitments to reduce greenhouse gas pollution, restricting abortion rights, giving tax breaks to giant corporations, making state government a pawn of business interests.
Betsy Johnson is running as the unaffiliated spoiler in the Governor's race. She has essentially no chance of winning. Unfortunately, Johnson has a decent chance of taking enough votes away from Kotek to make Drazan Oregon's next governor.
I know, that sounds weird to those who view our state as reliably blue. But polling indicates that it's a toss-up between Kotek and Drazan. So says the well-regarded FiveThirtyEight forecast.
So, please, vote for Tina Kotek. Resist the urge to register your irritation with current Governor Kate Brown by casting your ballot for Johnson or Drazan. I'm not wild about the job Brown has done either.
But I know that Kotek isn't Brown. She's her own woman, competent, experienced, personable, a skilled leader. Oregon will be much better off with Kotek in the Governor's Office, I'm confident of that.