Oregon Secretary of State Kate Brown flew back to Oregon this morning from Washington, D.C., according to MSNBC reporter Zachary Roth.

Her unexpected return from an east-coast conference of secretaries of state comes as Gov. John Kitzhaber is under intense pressure over an influence-peddling scandal involving himself and First Lady Cylvia Hayes

Kitzhaber and Hayes are the subject of a criminal investigation by the Oregon Department of Justice and the FBI.

Brown would become governor if Kitzhaber resigns. WW examined her potential succession in today's paper.

Brown was attending the winter conference of the National Association of Secretaries of State in Washington, D.C. It began Tuesday, and is not scheduled to end until Friday. Brown is president of the group's executive board. Roth is covering the event, and tweeted this morning that Brown had unexpectedly left.

Brown's spokesman, Tony Green, said he can only confirm that Brown is on her way back to Oregon.

Kitzhaber met privately with Senate President Peter Courtney yesterday.