In recent days his campaign reported that he received $50,000 from Thomas Cook, a Vancouver, Washington, businessman who is a major Taco Bell franchisee. He also received $10,000 from the Tillamook Creamery Association and a like amount from Wachenberg Investments of Lake Oswego.
Another major donor is Lone Rock Timber Management, a Roseburg company that had led a consortium that bid on taking over ownership of Elliott State Forest. However, Democratic Gov. Kate Brown, after initially voting on the State Land Board to explore privatization, later helped block efforts to do so.
Lone Rock has now given $15,000 to Buehler’s campaign. Another major timber figure, Ochoco Lumber owner John Shelk, gave $25,000.
Brown has also raised about $1 million this year for her re-election campaign, although she has not yet formally announced.
It’s not yet clear how much opposition Buehler will have in the Republican primary. Bend businessman Sam Carpenter is exploring running for the GOP nomination. He criticized Buehler for not being more supportive of President Donald Trump.
Buehler has said he wrote in Ohio Gov. John Kasich instead of voting for Trump and in May said he had become more concerned about the president’s conduct.
Officials from Oregon Right to Life said they are also trying to encourage a strong pro-life candidate to get into the Republican primary. Buehler has described himself as pro-choice.