Oregon: Merkley, Novick Tout Dueling Endorsements

Posted April 14, 2008 at 6:46pm

State Speaker Jeff Merkley this week picked up another endorsement in his increasingly competitive race for the Democratic Senate nomination. But so did his upstart competitor, attorney Steve Novick.

The two are competing for the right to take on Sen. Gordon Smith (R) in November.

Merkley received the backing of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon, which cited his 100 percent voting record on abortion-rights issues from NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon.

Novick, meanwhile, was endorsed by the Graduate Teaching Fellows Federation, American Federation of Teachers Local 3544. The local union’s move to back Novick was significant because Oregon’s statewide AFT chapter has endorsed Merkley.

The GTFF represents more than 1,300 graduate teaching fellows and research assistants at the University of Oregon in Eugene.

“It is a real honor that the GTFF members felt so strongly about my grassroots campaign that they were willing to buck the state leadership to show their support,” Novick said in a statement. “And as a U of O alum, I know that with fighting Ducks on your side, you can’t lose.”
— David M. Drucker