“Monday’s rally signals the emergence of a potent, conservative political force in Oregon’s stormy natural resource debates.” — Oregon’s Statesman Journal, 6/13/00
Salem, OR — On June 12th, Oregon Citizens for a Sound Economy (CSE) held its first annual Day at the Capitol. More than 300 volunteer activists from around the state traveled to Salem to meet with their elected officials, attend hearings, and even testify before the state legislature.
Property and Prosperity at Issue. During the events at the Capitol, CSE activists emphasized the themes of less government, lower taxes, and more freedom. The event provided the activists with an opportunity to learn more about other core CSE issues such as fundamental tax reform, technology freedom, Internet taxation, the Microsoft antitrust case, and civil justice reform. Oregon CSE distributed over 300 technology brochures featuring telecommunications deregulation, and educated activists on Internet freedom and the Microsoft antitrust case. Oregon CSE activists stressed their opposition to frivolous lawsuits. Nearly 200 activists signed a letter to Sens. Wyden and Smith expressing their support of current civil justice reform legislation. Furthermore, more than two dozen of the activists testified about their opposition the federal government’s approach to species recovery. Commenting on the day, Sen. Veral Tarno stated, “This activity is the best thing that has happened to the Capitol.”
Public Officials Recognized. After the events at the Capitol, Oregon CSE hosted a luncheon to present awards to outstanding state public officials. Friend of the Taxpayer Awards were given to Representatives Vic Backlund, Betsy Close, Jeff Kropf, Kevin Mannix, Senate Majority Leader Gene Derfler, and Senators Verl Tarno and Ted Ferrioli. The Golden Friend of the Taxpayer Award — which is given to one Senator and Representative each year — was presented to House Speaker Lynn Snodgrass and Senator Gary George.
Russ Walker, director of Oregon Citizens for a Sound Economy thanked legislators for taking time to meet with activists and hear their concerns. “This was a great event,” said Walker. “I hope this will be the first step in changing the way we can impact public policy. CSE will definitely be back at the Capitol next year to move our issues forward.”