Potential Candidates Assemble to Succeed Congressman Peter DeFazio

Looking hard at the race: state Sens. Sara Gelser Blouin and James Manning.

When U.S. Rep Peter DeFazio, the longest-serving congressman in state history, announced his retirement from Oregon’s 4th Congressional District last week, Labor Commissioner Val Hoyle immediately announced her candidacy.

Also looking hard at the race: state Sens. Sara Gelser Blouin (D-Corvallis) and James Manning (D-Eugene), both of whom are up for reelection and would have to surrender their seats to run.

Gelser Blouin says she’s weighing a number of factors, including family considerations and where she could have the greatest impact.

Manning says numerous supporters have encouraged him to seek DeFazio’s seat, which interests him, but he’s also got unfinished business in Salem. “I’m not a person who walks away,” he says, “and there is the old saying about a bird in the hand.” Manning expects to decide within the next week.

Also looking at a run in the Democratic primary: Andrew Kalloch, a Harvard Law-educated exec for Airbnb with a background in New York City politics.

Kalloch, who relocated from Portland to Eugene last year, says he’ll make his decision over the holidays. “I anticipate being part of it,” he says.