A New Group Wants Republicans in Salem

With an assist from the family of a former congressman.

HOW MUCH?

$250,000

WHO GOT IT?

Bring Balance to Salem, a political action committee formed in November to elect Republicans to the Oregon Legislature.

WHO GAVE IT?

Murphy Company, a Eugene-based wood products manufacturer.

WHY DOES IT MATTER?

The quarter-million-dollar donation from the company (as well as two more contributions of the same size from other donors) raises the newly formed PAC’s war chest to more than a million dollars. That’s a sizable chunk of change in legislative races, especially this early in the election cycle. The donors so far represent the fiscal-conservative end of the Republican Party, seeking to influence state government in a year when Democrats may struggle. Former U.S. Congressman Greg Walden’s sister-in-law Marta Simmons is one of two people identified as working with the PAC. Walden’s connection could mean it will become a fundraising powerhouse.

Notably, the PAC has reported no expenditures at this point.

WHAT DOES MURPHY SAY?

A company representative did not immediately return calls seeking comment.