When Dr. Bud Pierce earned his medical degree from UCLA in 1987, he probably did not envision running for Governor of the State of Oregon.
A successful career in oncology and hematology led him to Salem, Oregon where he and his wife Selma raised their daughter Kristina. Along the way he became active in the Republican Party.
On his website he states, ”Our Oregon faces a crisis of political leadership”. He believes our political leaders have been chosen from people who have not proven leadership abilities in their private lives, and have let their political lives provide their experience.
He has some good credentials in life experience. His father died when Bud was 14, and Bud started working at a market as a bag boy. He credits this job with learning to work quickly because he could earn more tips, know his job, which meant do not crack the eggs, and be nice to the customers.
He enlisted in the Marines in 1979. The next 6 years were served as an enlisted Marine reservist. He served again in the United States Naval Reserve during his medical training.
His political concerns reflect the concerns of most Oregonians. Oregon’s spending problems will only get worse unless we get rid of the same old tired politicians. Nothing has been done to remedy the budget challenges of PERS and state employee health care.
The other problems of funding education, and strengthening the economy are not being addressed in ways that are going to be problem solving.
Some of his suggestions range from closing down obsolete programs to cutting the budget in half! He suggests shrinking the State workforce by not replacing state workers who retire. A commission to examine state programs and recommending closing or consolidating would then face an up or down vote on their findings by the legislature.
Another innovative idea is to have each state agency and program justify their spending every budget cycle, and close down programs that have outlived their usefulness or are not making a perceptive difference.
PERS and the so called Cadillac health care plan for State workers would face a good look at making a total compensation package to reduce public sector costs.
Last election, popular Republican Dennis Richardson from Jackson County lost his bid for Governor when the more populace and Democratic Counties in northern Oregon voted for Democratic incumbent Governor Kitzhaber who then resigned in disgrace. This election Richardson is running for Secretary of State, another office that needs some strong leadership.
It remains to be seen if a Salem Republican will be able to pull the necessary votes from the heavily Democrat Counties. It may also be that Oregon voters are tired of seeing inept and corrupt politicians in office.