Three powerful women with no love lost for each other will square off in November for Oregon governor.
That field is set thanks to the likely triumph of former House Minority Leader Christine Drazan (R-Canby) in the Republican primary. Drazan leads former state Rep. Bob Tiernan 23% to 18%. No other entrant in the 19-candidate field received more than 11% of the vote.
Tiernan called Drazan to concede on Wednesday afternoon.
“This afternoon I spoke with Bob Tiernan, who graciously conceded the race,” Drazan said in a statement. “While all signs point to a victory, we are still waiting for more ballots to be tallied and for the race to be officially called. We look forward to celebrating the final outcome soon.”
Tiernan confirmed in a statement that he saw no path to pull ahead. “I wished Christine good luck in her campaign to lead Oregon in a new direction by quickly addressing our out-of-control crime problems, homeless camps on the streets, failing schools, and other problems that need to be fixed to unify all Oregonians no matter where they live in the state,” he wrote.
The wait for official confirmation stems from a disastrous election night in Clackamas County, where embattled County Clerk Sherry Hall failed to release a single result on Tuesday. The hand-count of ballots with defective barcodes is expected to drag on through the weekend.
But if the current results hold, Drazan will face off with the Democratic Party nominee, former House Speaker Tina Kotek, and an unaffiliated candidate, former state Sen. Betsy Johnson (D-Scappoose). The three officials regularly sought to thwart each other’s agendas in the Oregon Legislature, before they all resigned last year to run for governor.