Greg Walden is not dumping Donald J. Trump.
Walden (R-Hood River), the only Republican member of Oregon's congressional delegation, repeated his support for Trump to WW this week as the Republican presidential nominee prepares for a Portland visit in two weeks.
Walden's vote of confidence even after Trump lost the support of major GOP donors and made increasingly outrageous statements—including comments widely interpreted as a veiled threat to Hillary Clinton.
"The American people know the damage done by this administration here at home and around the world. The last thing I want is to give the same Obama/Clinton/Sanders philosophy another four years in charge," Walden said in a statement Wednesday.
"While I may disagree with the rhetoric Mr. Trump uses and some policy positions, he is the better option than Hillary Clinton in the White House," Walden said in his statement.
The day before, at a rally in North Carolina, Donald Trump's speech sparked the newest of a long series of controversies.
"Hillary wants to abolish, essentially abolish, the Second Amendment," Trump said to a crowd in Wilmington. "If she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don't know."
The comments, widely interpreted as a veiled reference to assassination, set off a storm of criticism from across the political spectrum. A number of local GOP donors are jumping the Trump ship.
Walden, too, will not be attending the candidate's Seattle fundraiser, or his Oregon rally at the end of August. But he has a different reason.
"Greg will be on a long-planned family vacation that last week in August," a Walden spokesman told the Bend Bulletin on Monday.
Walden will defend a non-competitive seat this November.