Johnson to run for governor as an independent
State Sen. Betsy Johnson, the influential co-chairwoman of the Joint Ways and Means Committee, is running for governor next year as an independent.
The Scappoose Democrat made the announcement in an email to supporters on Thursday.
“Oregonians are eager for a fresh start and new leadership,” she wrote. “But having to choose between another left-wing liberal promising more of the same or a right-wing Trump apologist – is no choice at all. Oregonians deserve better than the excesses and nonsense of the extreme left and radical right. Oregonians are ready to move to the middle where sensible solutions are found.
“That’s why I have decided to run for governor as an independent leader unaffiliated with any party and loyal only to the people of Oregon.”
Johnson said in a statement that she would raise money and start assembling staff and supporters before formally announcing her campaign early next year.
By early March, Johnson will have to give up her membership in the Democratic Party to run as an unaffiliated candidate. Without party backing, she will need to collect at least 23,744 signatures by next summer to qualify for the November 2022 ballot.
Johnson has more than $500,000 in her candidate finance committee, which she has maintained for her campaigns for state Senate. State law will allow her to transfer the account to the governor’s race.