Republicans have an interesting field of candidates to choose from for governor in the May primary. Of the nine candidates, two candidates rise to the top as the Oregon GOP’s best chance at taking back the governorship come November. Allen Alley and Chris Dudley are both solid candidates and either would present a formidable challenge to the Democrats’ two decade-plus hold on the office of governor. But of the two, Alley is the Republicans’ best choice.
Alley has considerable experience in business and even worked for a time in government. Dudley, although a new, fresh face in Oregon politics, has limited experience in business and none in government. Both men are intelligent and likeable. But Alley gets The Observer’s nod because of the experience factor.
Alley was co-founder of Pixelworks. He has been a CEO. He has successfully run a business, managed people, kept an eye on finances and the bottom line. He has said he would run the state like a business, the “$60 billion biennial business’’ that it is.
The state could benefit from having a governor with Alley’s business acumen. For too long the state, primarily because of its tax structure, has floated in and out of recessions with revenues rising and falling and little being put aside for the rainy days that always come. Alley’s knowledge and leadership could help put the state on a more stable path.
He understands that state government provides essential services. He also understands that those services cost money. And because that money comes from the public he knows that a high degree of accountability must be built into the process. He would enhance state government accountability.
He’s prepared to make the tough decisions that will put Oregon on a more stable and fiscally sound path.
Dudley, meanwhile, has some great ideas and his heart is in the right place. He cares about Oregon and would want to do a good job as governor. But he just doesn’t have the experience on any front that would lead us to believe he could pull it off. Maybe someday. Just not yet. We hope he doesn’t fade from the Oregon political scene.
Alley has the voice of experience. He’s ready to lead the state in a new direction today. And he has the skills to make it happen. Come May 18, Republicans should put their faith in experience, business know-how and leadership and make Allen Alley their nominee for governor.