PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tina Kotek campaigned Sunday in Portland at small businesses to see up close the challenges they face.

Kotek spent time at 2 well-known eateries — Mendelssohn’s on North Missippi and Mother’s Bistro on SW 3rd.

Later talking with reporters, Kotek said homelessness and crime are on the top of her to-do list and will prioritize solutions for them if elected.

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Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tina Kotek at Mother's Bistro in Portland, October 2, 2022 (KOIN)
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tina Kotek at Mother’s Bistro in Portland, October 2, 2022 (KOIN)

“Day 1, before I’m sworn in, (I will be) talking with the mayor and how the state can be more of a helper to solve the problems here,” she told KOIN 6 News. “One of the things we have to do is focus on the people who are most ready to get off the streets, get them into housing. And then for the folks who have higher needs, get them services.”

Her opponents, Republican Christine Drazan and unaffiliated candidate Betsy Johnson, dismissed Kotek’s small business campaign stops.

“Over her near-decade as Speaker, Tina Kotek supported billions in tax hikes and costly mandates and regulations that hurt Oregon small businesses. Her claims that she’ll support them as Governor flies in the face of her anti-business record,” said Drazan Communications Director John Burke. “Christine Drazan is the only candidate in this race who will support small businesses across this state, oppose new tax hikes, and empower job creation.”

Johnston’s spokesperson said, “Tina doing a tour of small businesses and talking about economic development is laughable. Under her decade of leadership, small businesses have never been more heavily burdened. Tina only knows how to saddle businesses with taxes and job killing regulations. I’m amazed they could find businesses willing to let her inside.”