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Summer Recess Conversation: Peter DeFazio

Pete Springer/OPB

Peter DeFazio has served 26 years in Congress, making him the longest serving of Oregon’s representatives (though Senator Ron Wyden gets the nod for longest time in D.C. when you include his term as a representative from 1981-1996).

DeFazio rose to the ranking Democratic seat on the House Natural Resources Committee this summer. Unsurprisingly, some of the most high profile work of his current term has involved trying to find a solution to the ongoing financial problems on Oregon & California Railroad lands. The proposal that DeFazio, and fellow Oregon congressmen Greg Walden and Kurt Schrader introduced in the House, has been met with varying degrees of criticism from environmental groups, Sen. Wyden, and DeFazio’s predecessor in the 4th District, Jim Weaver. The bill has been supported by many officials in the affected counties.

DeFazio has also been pushing a bill that would increase legal liability for companies that collect patents in bulk and then sue businesses that may violate those patents. The bill would make the so-called “patent trolls” responsible for all legal fees in the case.

He has also been pushing for resources to fight wildfires, keep rural post offices open, and sustain funding for food stamps.

What are your questions for Represenative Peter DeFazio?

congress peter defazio politics recess 2013

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