Interim state Rep. Gary Leif, R-Roseburg, will face Democrat Megan Salter in the November general election for House District 2, even though voters appear to have been confused by last-minute changes to the ticket.
Leif is a longtime photographer and former Douglas County commissioner.
His name appeared alongside former representative Dallas Heard’s on the Republican primary ballot. Heard, now a state senator, no longer wants the House seat. However, Heard’s senatorial appointment took place too late for him to withdraw his name for the House race.
Many voters seemed confused by all the late changes on the ticket. As of Wednesday morning, the two were 13 votes apart, with Heard in the lead. Heard had 49.7 percent of the vote to Leif’s 49.5 percent.
Leif already had the Republican nomination going into the primary. Fearing voters might select Heard, and knowing Heard would decline the position, Republican precinct committee persons did an end run around them, meeting in Roseburg last month to nominate Leif so that his name would be certain to appear on the ballot in November.
Leif was appointed interim representative last month.
Salter, of Roseburg, a former preschool teacher and stay-at-home mom, ran uncontested in the Democratic primary.
In House District 7, both incumbent Republican Cedric Hayden and Democrat Christy Inskip were unopposed in the primary. They’ll face each other in November.
House District 2 covers Roseburg and most of South Douglas County, including Myrtle Creek, Canyonville, Riddle and Glendale, also extending into small rural corners of Josephine and Jackson counties. District 7 covers South Lane and North Douglas County, including Winchester, Sutherlin, Oakland, Yoncalla, Elkton and Drain.