Greg Barreto receives a congratulatory hug and handshake from supporters Jennifer and Jack Boyd of La Grande at his residence in Cove Tuesday night after learning about his victory over John Turner in the Oregon House District 58 race. (PHIL BULLOCK/The Observer)
Union County residents can rest assured that their next state representative will come from the east side of the mountain.
La Grande business owner Greg Barreto handily defeated John Turner Tuesday night in the Republican primary, garnering 83 percent of the Union County vote, 80 percent in Wallowa County and 51 percent in Umatilla County.
Turner, a former president of Blue Mountain Community College and Marine colonel, conceded the race about 8:35 p.m. Tuesday night.
Barreto’s family, friends and supporters celebrated at his home in Cove. The crowd cheered loudly when Greg’s wife, Chris, announced Turner conceded the race.
“I used to wrestle in college,” Greg Barreto told the group of about 100. “You never go into a match underestimating your opponent, even if they’re wearing tennis shoes instead of wrestling shoes.”
The Barreto Manufacturing owner and operator said he was humbled by the election results but is excited.
“There’s a new adventure on the horizon,” he said. “It was a challenge and all-consuming, but I don’t see the future being too different.”
For the full story and complete election coverage, see Wednesday's edition of The Observer.