© 2023 KLCC

136 W 8th Ave
Eugene OR 97401

Contact Us

FCC Applications
Oregon's Willamette Valley seen from Eugene
NPR for Oregonians
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Incumbent Senator Merkley Defeats GOP Challenger Perkins


U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley has won re-election for the Oregon seat he was first elected to in 2008.  He beat Republican Jo Rae Perkins, who made national news this year for her support of the wide ranging but discredited QAnon internet conspiracy theory and “science denialism” during the pandemic.

Merkley says if the Democrats can take control of the Senate, he’ll work to counter Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s policies. 

"Number one: with a blue Senate, we unrig it," declared Merkley. "It’s outrageous that the Republican priorities for the powerful...tax breaks for the rich, stacking the courts, require only 51 votes in the Senate. But the Democrat’s priorities for the people, for investing in families...those require 60 votes. Giving Mitch McConnell a veto that he uses to obstruct and block those investments.”

Merkley added he’ll also work towards higher election integrity. 

The incumbent’s win keeps Democrats holding both of Oregon’s Senate seats, the other being Senator Ron Wyden.

Copyright 2020, KLCC.

Brian Bull joined the KLCC News Team in June 2016. In his 25+ years as a public media journalist, he's worked at NPR, Twin Cities Public Television, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Wisconsin Public Radio, and ideastream in Cleveland. His reporting has netted dozens of accolades, including four national Edward R. Murrow Awards (19 regional), the Ohio Associated Press' Best Reporter Award, Best Radio Reporter from the Native American Journalists Association, and the PRNDI/NEFE Award for Excellence in Consumer Finance Reporting.