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Previous story Oregon Democrats argue, but mostly agree, in only televised debate before 1st District primary Next story

Published on Wednesday October 19, 2011 - 7:55 AM
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PORTLAND, Oregon - It was the similarities more than the differences that defined the only televised debate by three Oregon Democrats hoping to replace former U.S. Rep. David Wu.

The candidates agreed Tuesday night that their top priority would be finding ways to bring more jobs to the 1st District, and they all called for more spending on roads, bridges and other infrastructure projects.

Disagreement arose over trade agreements. State Sen. Suzanne Bonamici said she could support free trade agreements if they created jobs in Oregon and had adequate environmental, human rights and labor protections. Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian and state Rep. Brad Witt both said they'd oppose trade agreements like those recently approved with South Korea, Panama and Colombia.

The candidates mostly refrained from criticizing each other.

The winner in the Nov. 8 special primary will likely face Republican businessman Rob Cornilles.

Wu resigned in August after reports that he made an unwanted advance.