PORTLAND -- Oregon's 2012 election has determined control of the state House and Senate, the new Portland mayor, and a marijuana measure, as well as other key races.
Incumbents Congressman Earl Blumenauer, Rep. Greg Walden, and State Treasurer Ted Wheeler were all voted into another term. Secretary of State Kate Brown and Suzanne Bonamici won their first full terms.
Democrats took control of the Oregon House, with 31 seats. Republicans hold 24 of the 60 total seats
Charlie Hales will take over as Portland's new mayor, easily defeating Jefferson Smith.
Voters rejected proposals for a private casino in Wood Village and also voted down Measure 80, which would have made it legal to possess and smoke marijuana for recreational use.
Voters did approve an initiative to dedicate the Corporate Kicker refund to school funding but the next Oregon legislature is still likely to confront another tight budget, rising public pension costs and tense decisions about the future of criminal sentences.
Political Analyst Len Bergstein said Republicans lost opportunities to gain ground in Oregon. "The headline is 'Oregon stays blue'," said Bergstein. He also said voters rejected most spending measures, reflecting an ongoing concern for Oregon's economic situation.
"We've got to regroup," Allen Alley, Chair of the Oregon Republican Party, told KGW. " Maybe I'll call Chip Kelly. We need a new offensive playbook."
When election results started streaming in at 8 p.m., voter turnout had climbed past 72 percent, according to unofficial voter returns released by the Oregon Secretary of State's office.
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