Christine Drazan Concedes in Governor’s Race

“Given what we know about the ballots outstanding, the math for a comeback simply does not add up.”

Acknowledging what has been likely since results from the first batch of Oregon ballots were released on election night, Republican nominee for governor Christine Drazan this afternoon conceded the race to Democratic nominee Tina Kotek.

Drazan, the former House minority leader from Canby, mounted a strong campaign after serving less than two terms in the Legislature. The current tally shows her trailing Kotek by 3.7%, a difference of 65,000 votes. But many of the votes remaining to be counted are in Washington County, where Kotek is strongly outperforming Drazan.

“I want to express my deepest gratitude to all those who supported me and put their trust in our campaign,” Drazan said in a statement issued at 3:01 pm.

Although Democrats tried without evidence to paint her as a MAGA supporter, Drazan also made a point in her concession statement of endorsing the security and accuracy of the state’s vote-by-mail system.

“I also want to assure Oregonians that every vote will be counted and that their voices were heard in this election,” Drazan said.

She noted that Kotek will end up with less than a majority—thanks to the share taken by unaffiliated candidate Betsy Johnson.

“A majority of Oregonians supported a candidate that did not win,” Drazan said. “This is a unique moment in Oregon’s history and an extraordinary opportunity for leadership that recognizes the dynamics of this race that call for moderation and inclusivity moving forward. I have spoken with Tina Kotek and hope for the best for our state as she steps into this role.”

Although concerns about crime, homelessness and the general unpopularity of Gov. Kate Brown and President Joe Biden gave Drazan a real opportunity to end Republicans’ 10-election losing streak in races for governor, she failed to gain traction in the state’s three most populous counties—even in Clackamas County, where she lives.

DHM pollster John Horvick noted that on Twitter: