Tina Kotek is a policy nerd. That’s the consensus of nearly everyone who knows her: The former House speaker loves to dig into the minutiae of legislation, and is more comfortable at a Marvel movie than a cocktail party.
But with polls showing her locked in an unexpectedly close race with Christine Drazan, Kotek must find a way to stir the loyalties of Democrats with some larger ideals. That’s a task made more difficult by the current condition of Oregon, after nearly 15 years of Democratic Party control of the Legislature and 35 years of Democrats controlling the governor’s office.
So when Kotek appeared before our editorial board last week, she leaned on another of her personality traits: toughness. She argued that what sets her apart from her predecessors is the ability to see a task through to completion.
And she described a frustration with the status quo that echoes that of many voters.
“Last August, my wife and I sat down and said, ‘There’s going to be a new governor, and we have to make sure things work,’” she recalled. “And I decided to run because I want things to work. I am tired of things not working.”
Watch the full video below.