Ron supports Oregon’s export economy as a jobs creator

In between town halls last weekend in Linn and Douglas counties that focused largely on the economy and jobs, Ron had several media interviews that covered exports, oil train safety and health care for veterans.

Ron sat down on Friday in Portland for an extended interview with KGW’s “Straight Talk” and then in Salem with the editorial board of the Statesman Journal.

In both settings, many of the questions centered on Ron’s work with President Obama to boost U.S. exports in the Pacific Rim, a key priority given Oregon’s location.

“There are going to be a billion middle-class households in the developing world by 2025,” Ron said on Straight Talk. “That means they’re going to have a lot of money to spend. And one of the things we know about exports in our state is often they pay better wages than do the non-trade jobs.

“So if you’ve got middle-class people around the world who are going to spend money, let’s have them buy the Oregon brand,’’ Ron said. “Let’s make things here, Let’s grow things here. Let’s add value to them here. And let’s ship them somewhere.”

He also spoke about exports with television news stations in Eugene and Medford with an additional spotlight on his oil trains safety legislation and on his letter to the Veterans Administration urging better care and benefits for veterans who were on C-123 aircraft still contaminated with Agent Orange after the Vietnam War.

“We’re trying to make sure that our vets who got exposed to Agent Orange stateside,” Ron told KOBI TV in Medford, “can get good quality health care at the VA … When the vets honor us by wearing the uniform of the United States, we have got to be there with good health care for them.”

Ron said his oil trains bill takes a market-based approach and follows in the wake of safety concerns expressed by local first responders at a Lane County roundtable he and Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) held last year.

“The focus has got to be to get these unsafe cars off the rails,” Ron told KVAL TV in Eugene. “The reality is we’re seeing some serious accidents.”

While in Eugene, Ron also stopped by the University of Oregon’s spring football game on Saturday. He got to catch up with many of his fellow Ducks alumni--including one very notable recent grad in Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota.