Our poll this week asking if John Kitzhaber would be good or bad for business showed that he’s got some work to do to woo the business vote. Kitzhaber, 62, was governor of Oregon for two consecutive terms from 1995-2003. He threw his hat back into the ring a few weeks ago.
Before becoming a politician, he was a practicing emergency room doctor, and in recent years has been working for health reform, founding the Archimedes Movement.
There had been a lot of speculation about whether he would run. After he announced, he said in one interview that he wanted to continue the state’s efforts to attract green businesses if elected. But more specifics about how he would tackle the state’s economic woes and help hard-hit businesses have yet to be seen.
He appeared this week at the Portland Business Alliance forum, saying he was not going to back the effort to repeal tax increases aimed at Oregon’s wealthiest state residents and the corporate minimum tax.
Don’t like Kitzhaber? Just yesterday, Bill Bradbury announced he would also be a Democratic contender for the 2010 title. And Allen Alley is the only announced Republican candidate so far. And that’s just the beginning as the race for the next governor begins to heat up.