Hanna aims for House GOP leadership.Byline: David Steves The Register-Guard
Lane County's only Republican in the Legislature is about to ascend to his party's top post in the House.
Rep. Bruce Hanna is running unopposed in Thursday's election for House Republican leader.
That will put the 47-year-old businessman in charge of campaigning for the House Republicans in next year's elections and the Republicans' policy positions when the Legislature convenes in a planned February special session.
Although he lives across the Douglas County Douglas County is the name of twelve counties in the United States:
Rising to a leadership post wasn't a specific goal for Hanna when he entered the Legislature three years ago.
`I never came to the Legislature and thought, `Gee, if I don't become the leader of our caucus caucus: see convention. , I'm not a good legislator LEGISLATOR. One who makes laws.
2. In order to make good laws, it is necessary to understand those which are in force; the legislator ought therefore, to be thoroughly imbued with a knowledge of the laws of his country, their advantages and defects; to ,' ' he said.
"It just doesn't work that way. I didn't come with that vision.'
Hanna started his legislative career with more of an interest in budget matters than political strategy.
That interest, and his business background, helped earn him a place on the budget-writing Joint Ways & Means Committee in each of his two sessions.
In 2007, Hanna also served as deputy minority leader, a post that gave him a taste of the kind of work he'll soon be taking on as minority leader: working with members of his own party to determine the Republican caucus position on policy matters and then negotiating with the Democrats as bills move up for votes.
Given his background in budget matters and political strategy, Hanna said he plans to give his fellow House Republicans the leeway lee·way
1. The drift of a ship or an aircraft to leeward of the course being steered.
2. A margin of freedom or variation, as of activity, time, or expenditure; latitude. See Synonyms at room. to help steer caucus positions on topics ranging from farm and forest policy to education and health care.
"I will not ascend to that leadership position assuming to know how all this works," he said.
"The more of our members whose experience we can use and take advantage of, the stronger we will be as a caucus."
Hanna readily acknowledged that he takes the GOP caucus reins during a challenging time for his party.
Republicans followed up on their frustrating frus·trate
tr.v. frus·trat·ed, frus·trat·ing, frus·trates
a. To prevent from accomplishing a purpose or fulfilling a desire; thwart: session as the minority House caucus with many of them announcing they would not run again - leaving Hanna to recruit perhaps a half-dozen candidates for GOP-held seats as well as challengers in districts held by Democrats.
`I'm hoping to set the bar as high as we can to get candidates to come from the highest level. I'm saying, `It's important that you take your turn at representing Oregonians,' ' he said.
Hanna also said he is trying to adapt to an era in which the electorate's mood has swung in the Democrats' direction.
He and other top House Republicans recently replaced longtime long·time
Having existed or persisted for a long time: a longtime friend; a longtime resident of Detroit.
Adjective campaign consultant Chuck Adams, known for his hard-right, hard-hitting campaign style, with a New York-based firm, Mercury Public Affairs Those public information, command information, and community relations activities directed toward both the external and internal publics with interest in the Department of Defense. Also called PA. See also command information; community relations; public information. .
Mercury helped Sen. Gordon Smith
Gordon Harold Smith (born May 25, 1952) is Oregon's junior United States Senator, currently serving his second term. He is a member of the Republican Party. , R-Ore., win his 2002 re-election and has helped elect Republicans in other states that lean Democratic.
Hanna said the move reflected his desire to "reach out and try to connect with all voters" rather than rely on the Republicans' traditional strategy of building a coalition of conservatives and motivating them to vote.
House Democratic Leader Dave Hunt For other persons named Dave Hunt, see Dave Hunt (disambiguation).
Dave Hunt (1926 – ) is a Christian apologist, speaker, radio commentator and author. He has been in full-time ministry since 1973. said Hanna's politics - solidly conservative on everything from social issues to business regulation to taxes and spending - are no different from those of his predecessor, current Minority Leader Wayne Scott Wayne Scott a Republican politician from the U.S. state of Oregon. He is a member of the Oregon House of Representatives, representing House District 39, which includes the communities of Barlow, Beavercreek, Canby, Mulino and Oregon City. , who is stepping down because he won't be running for re-election next year.
But Hunt said he was optimistic op·ti·mist
1. One who usually expects a favorable outcome.
2. A believer in philosophical optimism.
op that Hanna would be easier to work with across the aisle than he found Scott to be.
"My experience has been that he's been very trustworthy," said Hunt, D-Gladstone, of Hanna's style. "When he's told me something, I can take it to the bank."
Rep. Phil Barnhart, a Eugene Democrat and the majority whip, said Scott did a bulk of the negotiating on the Republicans' behalf, leaving few opportunities for deputies such as Hanna to showcase their own styles.
"Most of the negotiating was done by Wayne," he said. "So knowing exactly how Bruce is going to handle it is up in the air at this stage."
Barnhart, whose comments came after a joint appearance with Hanna at the Eugene Rotary Club's luncheon Tuesday, said he was encouraged by something the incoming GOP leader said.
Hanna had told the audience that while the Republican position probably would differ from that of the Democrats, he had no intention of limiting his party's role to that of obstructionist ob·struc·tion·ist
One who systematically blocks or interrupts a process, especially one who attempts to impede passage of legislation by the use of delaying tactics, such as a filibuster. . Instead, he hoped that by making clear what the Republicans' objections are, there may be an opportunity to find common grown with the Democrats.
"When we have differences, I want to be clear about what that difference will be," he said, `so you won't say, `He's just a Republican getting in the way.' '