All blog posts created by Communications Office
  • Legislation launched to help grow Oregon beer, wine, cider, distilling industry

    Ron unveiled legislation last weekend in Oregon that would help to continue the strong growth of the craft beverage industry -- brewers, vintners, cidermakers and distillers -- in the state and nationwide.

    Flanked by representatives from each of those beverage industries in Oregon at a June 12 news conference at Hopworks Urban Brewery in Portland, Ron detailed how the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act would reduce outdated excise taxes and streamline antiquated regulations.

    The result, he said, would “uncork” even more growth in these homegrown Oregon beverage industries, which combine to produce an estimated 40,000 jobs and $6 billion in annual revenue for the state.

    The combination of tax relief and regulatory relief will free up the capital for small business that they need to reinvest to create even more jobs,’’ he said. “This is a 21st century powerful economic engine for Oregon.”

    After Friday’s news conference in Portland, the senator held a roundtable Saturday in Eugene with brewers, vintners, cidermakers and distillers from Eugene and the Willamette Valley; and Sunday in Bend with brewers, vintners, cidermakers and distillers from Central Oregon.

    At all three stops in Portland, Eugene and Bend, industry officials lauded the bill for combining all their conerens into one comprehensive piece of legislation. The legislation will be referred to the Senate Finance Committee, where Ron is the top-ranking Democrat.

  • 10 Ways Ron Fights for Equality for all Americans No Matter Who They Love

    In honor of LGBTQ Pride Month and in anticipation of the Supreme Court’s upcoming decision on marriage equality, here are 10 ways Ron has fought for the equality of all Americans, regardless of who they love.

    1. As a member of the House of Representatives, Ron voted against Don’t Ask Don’t Tell in 1993, with the view that Americans shouldn’t have to choose between serving in the military and the person they love.

    2. When asked about marriage during a hard fought 1996 Senate election, Ron became one of the first members of Congress to endorse same-sex marriage saying - “Gays and lesbians should not be discriminated against. If you have two people who have chosen a monogamous relationship, regardless of their sexual orientation, I don’t think it ought to be the business of the government.”

    3. In 1996, Ron was one of only 14 senators to vote against the Defense of Marriage Act, which defined marriage as between a man and a woman.

    4. Ron worked for years to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, sending a letter in 2007 to Senate Majority Leader Reid urging the bill’s repeal. He co-sponsored the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Repeal Act of 2010.

    5. Ron has championed several campaigns promoting marriage equality, including the “It Gets Better” project and the No H8 campaign.

    6. Ron has also shown his commitment to ending violence and discrimination against LGBTQ people around the world, urging then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2010 to revoke trade benefits to Uganda if they passed the draconian anti-homosexuality legislation being considered at the time.

    7. Ron voted in favor of the Employee Non-Discrimination Act in 2013, working to ensure that everyone received equal protection regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.

    8. Earlier this year, Ron cosponsored the reintroduction of the Charlie Morgan Military Spouses Equal Treatment Act, continuing his work to ensure that veterans’ benefits are extended to same-sex couples everywhere in the United States.

    9. This year, Ron has fought for equality by cosponsoring important legislation protecting Americans from discrimination regardless of sexual orientation, including the Tyler Clementi Higher Education Anti-Harassment Act and the Every Child Deserves a Family Act.

    10. Ron has pledged to continue supporting marriage equality because every American should have equal access to marriage under the law.

  • Celebrating the 30th Anniversary of The Goonies

    Ron's statement for the Congressional Record marking the 30th anniversary of "The Goonies" which was filmed in Oregon.

    "Mr. President, this Sunday marks the 30th anniversary of the release of the beloved film, "The Goonies.'' With enduring and relatable themes of adventure, adolescence, and friendship, "The Goonies'' has withstood the test of time and firmly established its place in American culture as a cult classic. A large part of what makes this film unique and impactful is its iconic setting along the stunning Oregon coastline. Indeed, so significant is the film's location that thousands of fans from around the world are gathering this week for a four-day festival in Astoria, Oregon--or, "The Goon Docks''--to celebrate the magic that is "The Goonies.'' In fact, Astoria has held a Goonies-based festival every year since the film's release in 1985.

       "The Goonies'' 30th anniversary celebration will include a variety of events around Astoria, as well as Cannon Beach, OR--another Oregon coastal town that served as an idyllic backdrop for the film. Most notably, Cannon Beach's impressive Haystack Rock is featured prominently in the film's opening scene. Fans will be able to relive their favorite Goonies memories by participating in festivities such as tours of the filming locations, treasure hunts, and a group "truffle shuffle.'' Astoria's Oregon Film Museum also invites festival attendees to visit its Goonies gallery, take a mug shot with friends, and even make their own feature film. Needless to say, it is sure to be a weekend of fun, nostalgia, and, in typical Goonie fashion, adventure.

       Just as the original Goonies fans and stars have grown and matured since the film's release in 1985, so has Oregon's film industry. With its magnificent and diverse natural beauty, Oregon has become a much sought after location for film production. As the backdrop for major television shows and box-office hits alike, film production in Oregon brings with it good-paying jobs and tourism that in turn support local businesses and economic development across the State. Certainly all film producers in Oregon and across the country should aspire to achieve the remarkable success of "The Goonies''."