The Northwest Credit Union Association (NWCUA) has announced its support of Sen. Suzanne Bonamici in the race to fill Oregon’s Congressional District 1 seat left vacant by David Wu’s August resignation. The district includes downtown Portland and Beaverton and stretches west to Astoria. Bonamici, a Democrat, currently represents District 17 in the Oregon State Senate.
The announcement comes on behalf of the NWCUA’s member credit unions, with the financial support coming from the Credit Union Legislative Action Council (CULAC), the NWCUA’s national federal political action committee (PAC).
“Oregon credit unions are excited to put our support behind Suzanne Bonamici for Oregon’s First Congressional District,” said Mark Turnham, President/CEO of NW Priority Credit Union. “Senator Bonamici has been a friend to credit unions for many years. We look forward to working with her in Congress on issues of critical importance to credit unions like member business lending and believe she will remain not only a friend to credit unions but become a champion for us in D.C.”
The NWCUA has worked with Bonamici during her time in the Oregon legislature on mortgage lending bills and consumer protection legislation. In previous sessions, she chaired the Senate General Government, Consumer, and Small Business Protection Committee, where most of the bills related to financial institutions were referred. Most recently, she chaired the bi-partisan efforts on the 2012 state redistricting plan. She has attended many credit union events and is close to the credit union advocates in her district.
A special election will be held on Jan. 31, 2012, to fill the vacancy in advance of the regular 2012 election, with primaries slated for Nov. 8, 2011. The three major Democratic candidates—Bonamici, Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian and state Rep. Brad Witt of Clatskanie—took part in a televised debate on Tuesday, Oct. 18. The leading contender for the Republican nomination is Rob Cornilles, a business owner from Tualatin, Ore., who ran against Wu in 2010.
The NWCUA will present a CULAC check to Bonamici on Oct. 20 at 1:30 p.m. as part of an event at NW Priority Credit Union’s Beaverton Branch, located at 14193 SW Millikan Way.
“Oregon credit unions and their employees help build stronger communities, and I am proud to receive their endorsement,” Bonamici said. “By working with credit unions to get more small-business owners the capital they need to grow and increase their bottom line, we can create economic opportunity for Oregonians in communities across the First Congressional District and the state. As Oregon’s next Congresswoman, I look forward to a productive partnership with Oregon credit unions as we work together to get people back to work and further our economic recovery.”
Bonamici has been endorsed by former Governor Barbara Roberts, former Congresswoman Elizabeth Furse, and incumbent Oregon Attorney General John Kroger.
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