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Bradbury, Kitzhaber Engage In Wide Ranging Debate In Portland

Voting begins in less than two months in the Oregon May primary, and the campaigns for governor are heating up. The two leading Democratic candidates for governor went head to head in a debate in Portland Monday night.

Former governor John Kitzhaber and former Secretary of State Bill Bradbury talked up their progressive credentials during a debate sponsored by the Multnomah County Democrats.

The two fielded questions on everything from health care to the environment. Bradbury repeated his proposal to scale back state tax breaks by five percent in order to raise $2 billion in education funding.

That promise helped win him the endorsement of the state's largest teachers union. But Kitzhaber dismissed Bradbury's plan as unrealistic. “I just don't think there's a bunch of low-hanging fruit in the tax expenditures. If there were, the legislature would have grabbed it," he said.

Kitzhaber is well ahead of Bradbury in fundraising.

But he's far short of the overall money leader in the race, Republican Chris Dudley. Dudley faces John Lim and Allen Alley in the GOP primary.

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