Republican congressional candidate Mike Erickson brags about his support for law enforcement in advertisements and political mailings, and he swears to oppose any legislation that is “soft on crime.”
He asserts that Andrea Salinas, his Democratic rival in Oregon’s newly created 6th Congressional District, intends to make it more difficult for police to do their jobs and simpler for people to get away with stealing, reckless driving, and drug usage.
Erickson’s 2016 arrest, a guilty plea for DUI, and a felony charge for having oxycodone that wasn’t prescribed to him were not revealed. He agreed to plead guilty to the DUI in exchange for the dismissal of the drug charges, and after completing a one-year diversion program, the DUI conviction was eventually withdrawn.
In a 30-second advertisement, Salinas highlighted Erickson’s DUI arrest and narcotics charges, but the incident’s complete facts have not yet been released. The DUI report that The Capital Chronicle acquired describes Erickson’s arrest.
Erickson, 59, admitted in a statement to the Capital Chronicle that he “made a mistake” by operating a vehicle while intoxicated. He claimed that the oxycodone belonged to his wife and that he was holding it, along with lipstick and a compact for her since she didn’t have a handbag on her.
He declared, “I have never used drugs, not even oxycodone or marijuana, and I have been very vigilant ever since. “Andrea Salinas’s nasty campaign against me is full of untruths and deceptive imagery. To win the election and hide her record, she will say and do anything.
Erickson is making his third attempt to run for office; he was unsuccessful against Democratic incumbent Darlene Hooley in 2006 and Oregon U.S. Rep. Kurt Schrader in 2008. After news broke that Erickson, who ran on a platform of family values, had driven a lover to an abortion clinic and given her $300 to cover the cost of the surgery, his 2008 campaign disintegrated.
This year’s election is tighter, but according to national political observers, Salinas has a slight advantage in the newly created district that includes Salem, part of Beaverton, Polk, and Yamhill counties, and the cities of Polk and Yamhill.
This time, Erickson’s campaign was built around the idea of being “tough on crime.” He is referred to be the son of a career police officer in his advertisements and mailings, which heavily contain endorsements from retired law enforcement officers.
He also cites Salinas’ legislative track record, including her support for a law that forbade police from pulling over vehicles for malfunctioning lights that don’t endanger driving safety in 2022 and an unsuccessful 2021 measure that would have allowed felons to vote from prison.
The Erickson campaign supplied three pages of notes in response to inquiries from the Capital Chronicle about Salinas’ legislative track record and her earlier statements about “reimagining” police enforcement.
Measure 110, which voters approved in 2020 and decriminalized the possession of small amounts of hard narcotics, has also been asked for to be repealed by Erickson. The law passed by the people may be amended by the Legislature, not by Congress.
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