Oregon Labor Commissioner Val Hoyle is the first Democrat to announce she’ll run to succeed U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.).
Hoyle, as a statewide officeholder, was among those whose names surfaced earlier this year as a possible candidate for governor. She ruled that out officially when House Speaker Tina Kotek (D-Portland), an ally, entered the race.
But Hoyle has long been considered a potential successor for DeFazio. She has served one term as labor commissioner and was up for reelection next year. She now risking a safe seat for the opportunity to serve in Washington, D.C.
Hoyle previously served in the Oregon House as the Democrats’ majority leader, representing Eugene and parts of Lane County. She’s an ally of both public- and private-sector unions and should be a leading candidate in any Democratic primary.
“From my time as majority leader in the Oregon House to my current role as labor commissioner, I have built a track record as a fighter for the middle-class and working families,” Hoyle said.
“I have always been focused on getting the job done, not on who gets the credit. Nobody can fill Peter DeFazio’s shoes. But I am determined to do all I can to ensure that his dedication to our people and communities, his strong and principled leadership, and his track record of putting the needs of hard-working Oregonians first will continue.”