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Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Oregon Legislature. This is a venue for political and policy coverage of the state government in Salem and its impact on the people of Oregon.

Election Ends With Very Little Change In Oregon Legislative Control

M.O. Stevens
Wikimedia Commons -

Even though party control isn't shifting at the Oregon State Capitol, there will be a lot of new faces. Nearly a quarter of Oregon House members decided not to seek re-election this year. But very few seats in the Oregon Legislature changed party hands during Tuesday's election.

In the Oregon House, Democrats appear to have maintained their 35-to-25 seat advantage. In the Oregon Senate, Republicans appear to have broken the Democrats' supermajority by picking up one seat.

That means Democrats in both chambers will need at least one Republican to cross the aisle if they want to raise taxes. That could factor in to discussions over a possible transportation funding package, which will likely include a hike in the gas tax.

But that may have been the case anyway.

If Democrats had picked up one or twos seats and had supermajorities in both chambers, they'd likely still have to get buy-in from Republicans to have something that would withstand a challenge at the ballot.

Now semi-retired, Tom Banse covered national news, business, science, public policy, Olympic sports and human interest stories from across the Northwest. He reported from well known and out–of–the–way places in the region where important, amusing, touching, or outrageous events unfolded. Tom's stories can be found online and were heard on-air during "Morning Edition" and "All Things Considered" on NPR stations in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho.