‘Absolutely’: Merkley wishes he was at Dem debates


Oregon Democrat toyed with running for president in 2020

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley, who toyed with the idea of running for president in 2020, told KOIN 6 News he “absolutely” wishes he was up on the debate stage with the other candidates.

In a satellite interview from Washington, Merkley said he watched the Democratic debate Tuesday night on CNN and expects to watch the next one Wednesday.

“It was very interesting to see the set of issues and variety of perspectives. It’s giving a lot for Americans to think about.”

But when asked if he ever wished he was up there, he said — without hesitation — “Absolutely!”

“I’ll tell you, I go, ‘No, no, they should say this. This is the point they should make. No, they got that one wrong.’ Oh, I wish I was up there, you bet.”

Merkley also talked about the Trump Administration’s proposed SNAP cuts that would affect 66,000 Oregonians. He and the entire Oregon delegation “except for Greg Walden” signed a letter decrying the cuts.

He also said Trump “hasn’t laid out a coherent vision” for trade with China and doesn’t expect one to materialize before the 2020 election.

And he was also part of a bipartisan funding bill that sets up infrastructure issues for the next 5 years. It doesn’t cover everything, but puts money into play to repair crumbling roads and bridges.

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