Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR) may represent a very blue district in a blue state, but the dean of the Oregon congressional delegation does not see sunny skies for President Barack Obama in the rainy Pacific Northwest for 2012.
“I believe Oregon is very much in play,” DeFazio said. “At this point it pretty much depends on how far out there the Republican nominee is. You know with a respectable —someone who is a little bit toward the middle of the road — Republican nominee, he’s going to have a very tough time getting re-elected.”
“I’ve just done six town hall meetings, have [more] to go but people are shaking their head and saying ‘I don’t know if I’d vote for him again.’,” DeFazio said.
“One guy asked me… give me 25 words what he’s about and what he’s done for me. I’m like… ‘it could have been worse?”
Oregon is by no means a swing state: the state’s seven electoral votes have gone for Democrats in every election since 1988, and in 2008, Oregon delivered Obama a 17 percent margin of victory over Republican opponent John McCain.
Both of the state’s senators are Democrats, and three of the five House seats are held by Democrats. One is held by a Republican, while one is vacant after the recent, scandal-tinged resignation of Democrat David Wu.
DeFazio said that he thinks Obama would have to wage a passionate campaign to win Oregon again, but doesn’t see that happening.
“Fight? I don’t think it’s a word in his vocabulary,” he said.