GOP rally (copy)

State Senator Dallas Heard, R-Winston, speaks in front of the Douglas County Courthouse during a campaign rally for the political party in 2020.

A newly proposed bill would bar state Sen. Dallas Heard, R-Myrtle Creek, from holding office in the Oregon Republican Party while simultaneously serving as a state elected official.

The bill’s sponsors argued there are potential conflicts of interest involved in holding both party and legislative positions, but Heard told The News-Review Thursday that the bill would take away the rights of the people to choose their leaders for both party and Legislature.

“Why should the people have the person they’ve chosen to serve them in either position ripped away from them through no choice of their own, but through the choice of a few elitists up in Salem from both parties?” Heard said.

Senate Bill 865 was introduced in the state Senate Wednesday by two of Heard’s fellow Republicans, Sens. Lynn Findley and Bill Hansell, and by Democratic Senate Majority Leader Rob Wagner.

The bill would also impact state Sen. Dennis Linthicum, R-Klamath Falls, who is the treasurer of the Republican Party. In addition to legislators, the bill would bar governors, Supreme Court justices and other elected state officials from becoming office holders of any political party.

Elected officials who violated the rule would be charged $250 per day.

Heard has been chairperson of the Oregon Republican Party, which is a separate entity from the Legislature, since February.

Responding to speculation that the bill’s introduction reflects a growing rift among Republican legislators, Heard likened it to family conflict.

“There’s always squabbles going on in every family. So there’s really nothing new about that. Doing a good job often creates opponents. It’s just the sad world we live in,” he said.

Heard has been at the center of controversy at the state Capitol more than once over the past year, especially over COVID-19 safety restrictions.

In March, he pledged to vote “no” on every bill until the Capitol building was reopened to the public.

In December, he removed his mask on the Senate floor, to protest COVID-19 safety rules.

During a protest at the state Capitol on Jan. 6, in which demonstrators called for the building to reopen to the public, Heard had this to say about state leaders as he gestured to the state Capitol.

“Don’t let any of these punks from that stone temple over there ever tell you they are better than any of you. Trust me, I work with these fools. None of them are half as good as any of you and you need to bring the power to them,” he said.

OPB reported Hansell and Findley said in a joint statement they had been contacted by constituents in and out of the Republican party who were concerned about mixing party politics with legislative policy.

“All of a sudden, certain votes are being seen as official positions of all Republicans in Oregon when they aren’t, and vice versa. There are potential conflicts of interest and ethical considerations, and we have a responsibility to ensure the integrity of the legislature is not in question,” the senators said.

There’s no guarantee SB 865 will ultimately pass, but if it does Heard said he would challenge it on principle.

“My goal is to represent my constituents to the best of my ability in fighting for their freedoms and their rights in the Senate, and then my goal as the chair and the party leader for the state for the Republican Party is to help the Republican Party move forward and be much the same, be a party of integrity, honesty, transparency and a group that represents freedom and liberty for all people,” he said.

Reporter Carisa Cegavske can be reached at ccegavske@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4213.

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Senior Reporter

Carisa Cegavske is the senior reporter for The News-Review. She can be reached at ccegavske@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4213. Follow her on Twitter @carisa_cegavske

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(14) comments

mworden

I feel like I should have an opinion on this issue, but I don't. It reminds me of watching one of those TV shows where people try to do an intervention on a family member who's running amok smoking crack. The GQP has lost its collective mind and the GOP is trying to save them and the entire family. I wish them well.

Really?

It is always an education reading the comments. I enjoy Mike & CitizenJoe for their spot on awareness of what is going on with Heard and others that have profited from this pandemic and stuck it to those who really needed it. Heard gets away with things that others couldn’t because of his family connections. There is a need for representation for all not just the select few.

S

Douglas County is for lack of a better description . . . a cesspool of conservative caca aka The Republican Central Committee. Here's who NOT TO VOTE FOR if you want to continue setting the standard for being backwards.https://www.facebook.com/douglascountygop/photos/a.184633018619625/1283976138685302/

melrosereader

Haha. I was in Peru and Bolivia. To get from Peru to Bolivia we took a boat across Lake Titicaca. The Peruvians claimed the Titi half and relegated the caca half to the Bolivians. The Bolivians, as might be expected, claimed the opposite.

melrosereader

Seems to me that the democrats are trying to fix things. The republicans? They just want to lie.

NJ

"Senate Bill 865 was introduced in the state Senate Wednesday by two of Heard’s fellow Republicans, Sens. Lynn Findley and Bill Hansell, ... ." This speaks volumes about how saner heads prevail and should be a good indication to Douglas County Republicans that the true Republican Party is intact in our State. Long overdue is the need to silence this misinformed and misguided insurrectionist's voice in State legislation. Heard has always had a choice, represent us all, or represent a personal political agenda. One or the other Dallas. Personally I'd rather you vacate your place in the Senate but only because I feel that eventually saner heads in the real and true Republican Party will see the error of your way in representing them as a whole. Your personal political agenda was a failure from its inception and your Party members could easily see that your Brownshirt movement is an attempt to destroy pride and patriotism in our State's Republican Party. This bill needs to pass.

CitizenJoe

I confess to profoundly mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, I'd like Dallas Heard to proceed unfettered in his work to destroy any credibility that the Republican Party may yet retain. On the other hand, we really need to have an effective Republican Party (or Whig, or other actually-loyal opposition party) for effective political discourse. On the other-other hand, the GQP is not currently that party, so its destruction earlier than later is best. You go, Dallas!

Momos

So, whatever happened to that Dodge he was "donating"? Did it sell? Who won it? Or was it just a ruse so he could brag about a car? Anyone got a link?

Heard does nothing for Douglas County except make us look stupid. Which, since we elected him to represent us, I guess we really are. You own him, Republicans. Enjoy your free fall into irrelevance, kicking and screaming like a spoiled brat in WalMart. It is gratifying to see his fellow party members turn on him, though. That family feud has just begun.

Mike

You're could ask the Backside Brewery folks. The owners are members of Citizens for Tyranny. Backside organized and sold tickets to raffle off Senator Heard's Viper. Backside Brewery also received $212,500 of federal Paycheck Protection Program money just before they announced they were opening a new location.

Roseburgonian

What a joke.

Mike

Remember the Citizens for Tyranny business group in Douglas County that doxxes old ladies and labels them "filth traitors" in blood. It was Senator Heard who wrote Citizens for Tyranny's declaration which they attempted to extort Douglas County elected officials to agree and sign or face recall. It was Senator Dallas Heard who raffled off his viper car as a fundraiser for Citizens for Tyranny.

Mike

Senator Dallas Heard received $255,313 of federal paycheck protection program money for the four different businesses he claimed all listing his Roseburg 578 Rogers Road business address in Roseburg. In addition, Senator Heard received a $9,000 federal Covid Economic Injury Disaster Loan for one of those businesses. This doesn't include the $9,405 of PPP money received by Senator Heard's sister Lindsey.

https://covidbailouttracker.com/

Mike

Sen. Dallas Heard’s largest campaign contributor was foreign company Jordan Cove Pipelines.

http://www.nrtoday.com/opinion/guest_columns/government-is-supposed-to-protect-the-people-not-corporate-campaign-donors/article_bc7c0932-3a3d-530d-a67d-91dc01688514.html

Sen. Dallas Heard submitted letter opposing extension to Jordan Cove Pipeline Project public comment period and encouraged eminent domain of Douglas County properties.

https://www.nrtoday.com/news/environment/jordan_cove/gary-leif-dallas-heard-submit-letter-opposing-extension-to-jordan-cove-public-comment-period/article_c5d7ca35-369f-5cb2-9185-7b53256e7adf.html

Sen. Dallas Heard voted against SB 1701 emergency unemployment benefits for people impacted by coronavirus while collecting over $265,000 of federal PPP money himself.

https://justfacts.votesmart.org/bill/28687/74392/150832/dallas-heard-voted-nay-passage-sb-1701-authorizes-unemployment-benefits-for-employees-working-less-than-full-time#74392

Sen. Dallas Heard voted against HB 4212 use video conferencing to conduct government business during coronavirus pandemic and then ripped off his mask when conducting government business in person.

https://gov.oregonlive.com/legislators/Dallas-Heard/

Sen. Dallas Heard voted against HB 4213 prohibiting residential and commercial evictions during coronavirus emergency period while listing his personal home for sale for nearly $2.0 million.

https://gov.oregonlive.com/legislators/Dallas-Heard/

Sen. Dallas Heard refused to attend candidate forum to take questions from voters about his political platform.

http://www.nrtoday.com/opinion/letters/vote-for-candidates-who-show-up/article_e39b4a26-c65b-5592-bc52-4951ad57a09b.html

Sen. Dallas Heard condemned by News-Review Editorial Board for refusing to debate his candidate.

http://www.nrtoday.com/opinion/editorials/as_we_see_it/editorial-candidates-should-be-heard/article_14457384-f431-5d6f-b317-256106e2d4ce.html

Sen. Dallas Heard voted AGAINST tax cut for small business.

https://www.nrtoday.com/news/state/oregon_politics/local-legislators-split-on-governors-small-business-tax-relief-plan/article_d5127906-b2e5-580c-b6f6-fe12f85237d8.html

Senator Dallas Heard introduced legislation eliminating licensing requirements for contractors which benefited his personal business.

https://www.nrtoday.com/news/state/oregon_politics/legislative-update-speed-limit-could-be-raised-on-highway-138/article_7398f545-75b2-54b8-97e6-24833ac69403.html

Senator Dallas Heard opposed increase to minimum wage while collecting over $265,000 of federal PPP money.

https://www.nrtoday.com/news/roseburgs-republican-legislators-unhappy-with-2016-session/article_cbb54e26-eae7-11e5-8c23-071042cf4576.html

Senator Dallas Heard voted for his own pay increase, claiming his Legislative salary of $23,568 a year plus $2,000 per month per diem, free health care and PERS retirement program is minimum wage.

https://www.nrtoday.com/news/government/legislators-consider-rejecting-pay-raises/article_416b3c43-48ba-5a0e-9635-6cd79c6f6dc2.html

melrosereader

And yet Douglas County voters keep electing him. You can't fix stupid.

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