Four candidates have filed to fill out the term of state Rep. Diego Hernandez (D-East Portland), who resigned his House District 47 seat this month rather than face an expulsion vote.
In February, the four-member House Conduct Committee found after an investigation into complaints lodged by five women that Hernandez had violated House rules relating to sexual harassment and creating a hostile workplace. The committee recommended his expulsion.
Hernandez sued to block the expulsion vote of the full House, which would have been a first in Oregon, but a federal judge rejected his argument.
The four candidates who met today's deadline to file for the seat are Robin Castro, who ran for Portland City Council in 2020; Adrienne Enghouse, a nurse active in labor issues who recently sought appointment to the Senate seat vacated by now-Secretary of State Shemia Fagan; Cayle Tern, a member of Service Employees International Union who works in human services; and Andrea Valderrama, a policy director for the ACLU of Oregon.
Valderrama may be the best known of the four. She chairs the David Douglas School Board, ran for Portland City Council in 2018 and was recently appointed to serve on the statewide Latino and Indigenous Student Success Advisory Group.
Last year, Valderrama also filed for a restraining order in Multnomah County Circuit Court against Hernandez, but she subsequently withdrew it. News of the restraining order, reported by WW, and subsequent complaints about him set off the Legislature's investigation, which ultimately led to his resignation.
Now, precinct committee people will vote for their preferred candidates, and after that, the Multnomah County Commission will pick a successor to serve out the remainder of what would have been Hernandez's third two-year term.
The commissioners have 30 days from Hernandez's March 15 resignation to make their selection.