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Former House Republican Leader Christine Drazan of Canby announced Friday she is resigning from the Oregon Legislature effective Jan. 31.
While not explicit in her statement, resigning will give Drazan more time to campaign for governor and allow her to fundraise during the legislative session, which all representatives are barred from doing.
In her statement, Drazan chastised Oregon's political system and leaders. She joined the Legislature in January 2019, rising to the position of Republican leader in September of that year.
"I found a broken political system where people served their own interests and advanced short-sighted, bumper sticker policies. I found abusive, entitled powerbrokers shamefully casual about the impacts their decisions had on peoples’ lives," she said. "I found gamesmanship that would turn your stomach."
Her time as leader was marked by an acrimonious relationship between Republicans and Democrats in the House, highlighted by walkouts, legislative delay tactics and calls for the censuring of multiple Democrats.
Replacing a representative typically takes several weeks, meaning her resignation is likely to leave House District 39 without an elected representative for at least part of the 2022 legislative session, which begins Feb. 1.
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Her resignation is the latest in a string of high-profile departures in recent weeks. Tina Kotek resigned from the Legislature and her position as House speaker effective Jan. 21 to focus on her campaign for governor. Senate President Peter Courtney, D-Salem, announced he would not run for reelection this year, signaling an end to his historic tenure in office.
Drazan is one of the leading candidates in the Republican gubernatorial primary, which has swelled to 10 people.
Reporter Connor Radnovich covers the Oregon Legislature and state government. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 503-399-6864, or follow him on Twitter at @CDRadnovich.
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This article originally appeared on Salem Statesman Journal: Rep. Drazan resigns from Legislature effective Jan. 31