May 2020 Primary Endorsements

Portland Association of Teachers PAC Endorsements for the May Primary 

Endorsements for Local Races

Even in the best of times, local politics have a deep impact on the success of our schools, the well-being of our students, and the strength and fairness of our economy. Considering the public-health crisis that we are facing in our community and around the world, it is more important than ever that we have elected leaders who are committed to working with impacted communities to solve problems, rethink systems that perpetuate inequity, and take action to support our public schools, workers, and the public services that so many of our students depend on. 

Endorsement for Oregon Legislature

This year, the issues of keeping promises and respecting workers have been of central importance to the PAT PAC Board, and to all our PAT PAC members. The passage of SB1049 last summer-- which reallocates a portion of public employees’ compensation away from workers’ retirement savings, to use it to pay down the state’s debt-- was deeply troubling to teachers and all public employees. A vote for this bill represents a lawmakers’ willingness to forgo agreements made in trust, and force public workers to pay for the state's programs.

Nonetheless, we gave every candidate an opportunity to discuss their vote with us. Some answers horrified us- not only do some of our elected officials show no remorse for their vote, some said they'd do further cuts if needed.

This primary season, the PAT PAC is not endorsing, or giving money to, any candidate who voted for SB1049. We are hopeful that moving forward, our Oregon Legislators will be bold champions for workers, public education, and the revenue reform to allow our state to meet the needs of all our state’s children, families, and community members. 

Read More about the Candidates


Portland City Commissioner Position 1: Carmen Rubio

Carmen Rubio is a champion in the non-profit community and is running to ensure that the leaders making hard decisions are truly representative of everyone in our city. She has been the Executive Director of the Latino Network since 2009, and her priorities are addressing homelessness and housing affordability, climate action, and responsive government. She will be a valuable voice on the city council. Sign up to volunteer for Carmen's campaign!


Portland City Commissioner Position 2: Julia DeGraw 

Julia Degraw has spent her career bringing diverse groups together to fight for the common good. Worker’s rights, environmental justice, and housing have always been central to her work.

She led the fight to prevent Nestlé from bottling our public water in the Columbia River Gorge – and won; and she has brought to the forefront the conversation about reforming the Portland City Council’s at-large election and commission systems. Sign up to help get Julia's elected!



Portland City Commissioner Position 4: Chloe Eudaly

Chloe Eudaly ran for the CIty Council 4 years ago to get a renter’s perspective on the City Council. Since then, she has passed historic tenant protection policies, and advanced initiatives addressing climate change, air pollution, immigration removal defense, transportation justice, and racial equity. We look forward to continuing to work with her to make sure our city works for all our community members, especially those who have been under-served. Sign up to volunteer for Chloe's campaign!



District Attorney: Mike Schmidt 

We are lucky to have two highly qualified candidates in this race. Mike Schmidt’s focus on criminal justice reform, and his vision for re-thinking the systems that replicate inequity make him the ideal candidate in this race. His role as executive director of the Oregon Criminal Justice Commission, as well as leadership in national justice organizations, position him to spearhead 21st century justice reform in our state. Sign up here to help make Mike Schmidt our next DA!



Metro Council District 5: Mary Nolan

Mary Nolan has proved herself to be a powerful ally to workers and schools, in numerous roles in the past. During her twelve years in the Oregon Legislature, including as the majority leader in the House, she was a steadfast advocate for keeping the state’s promises to workers. She has a long history of advocating for women, public transportation, and environmental protections. In her role at Metro, she is committed to collaborating with unions to make sure that public sector projects embody a commitment to increasing stable, living-wage jobs in our community. Read more about Mary here.



Metro Council District 6: Bob Stacey

Bob Stacey has served on the Metro Council since 2013. He is committed to advancing affordable housing throughout the metro region, and expanding transportation options throughout the region. He continues to work to make sure families in all parts of the region have access to natural spaces, clean air, and efficient transportation options. Learn more about Bob Stacey here.



Multnomah County Commissioner District 1: Sharon Meieran

As an emergency room doctor, community health advocate, and mother of two children in Portland Public Schools, Sharon is committed to  addressing homelessness, addictions, and mental illness, and improving access to meaningful healthcare. Although being a County Commissioner is a full-time job, she continues to work shifts in the emergency room because of her belief in centering front-line workers in decision-making. Learn more about Sharon Meieran's campaign here.



Multnomah County Commissioner District 3: Jessica Vega Pederson

At Multnomah County, Commissioner Vega Pederson has championed the County’s efforts to combat climate change, increase access to public transportation, and has focused on expanding access to early childhood education. Before being elected to the County Commission, she was the first Latina elected to the Oregon House of Representatives. Sign up here to get involved with Jessica's campaign!



House District 33: Christina Stephenson

As a civil rights attorney, Christina has centered her career around protecting workers. She is a fierce advocate for labor rights, housing affordability, school funding, and the revenue reform we need to make Oregon a place where all our community members can thrive. As the mom of a kindergartener in PPS, she sees first-hand how direly our schools need the resources to lower class sizes and offer all the supports that our students need. Help elect Christina here!



House District 36: Laurie Wimmer

We are fortunate to have a strong field of progressive candidates for the HD 36 seat, but Laurie Wimmer surpasses all with her in-depth knowledge of the issues and policies that are most important to educators and families. Her decades of experience as an OEA lobbyist, advocating in Salem for educators and students, give her the political know-how to get things done.Above all, Laurie’s passion for public education, economic justice, racial equity, and collective bargaining position her to be a champion for PAT members, students, and working families. Volunteer to help get Laurie elected here!



House District 42: Paige Kreisman

Paige Kreisman deeply believes in fully funding public schools, strengthening workers’ rights, and providing needed human services to all Oregonians. Her background as an organizer and advocate for the Portland Democratic Socialists of America demonstrated a willingness to take a stand and fight for crucial issues. Although she is not an educator, she gave a firm commitment to collaborate with educators and the PAT on education legislation. Sign up here to get involved with Paige's campaign!



House District 46: Khanh Pham

Khanh Pham brings an organizer’s spirit to the constituents of House District 46. She is a working mom, and long-time community organizer, policymaker, and advocate for the diverse communities of the district. A long-time organizer for environmental and economic justice, she will be a leader in Oregon's transition to a renewable economy. Join the force working to elect Khanh here!


Senate District 18: Ben Bowman

Ben Bowman has been advocating for public education since childhood, when he walked picket lines with his mother, a teacher and union leader. With a background in education policy, Ben has a deep understanding of the challenges that Oregon’s teachers and students are facing, as well as what’s needed to solve them. He is also deeply committed to issues of social justice and economic inequality. As a school board member, he has been an ally to our colleagues in the Tigard-Tualatin School District; in Salem, he will be an ally to educators across the state. Get involved with Ben's campaign here!



Senate District 21: Kathleen Taylor

Senator Taylor’s record on public education and labor rights speaks for itself. Not only was she a vocal advocate for the Student Success Act, she has consistently voiced the need for structural revenue reform in Oregon so that we can fully fund education, social services, healthcare, and all the things kids and families in Oregon need. She voted no on SB 1049, rejecting the notion that workers' retirement accounts be raided to pay down the state's debt, so our support for her is PERSonal. Sign up here to volunteer with Kathleen's campaign!

OEA PAC Endorsements for Oregon Statewide Races

Attorney General: Ellen Rosenblum 

Secretary of State: Shemia Fagan

Treasurer: Tobias Read

OEA PAC Recommendations for Federal Races

US Senate: Jeff Merkley

Congressional District 1: Suzanne Bonamici 

Congressional District 3: Earl Blumenauer 

Congressional District 4: Peter DeFazio 

Congressional District 5: Kurt Schrader