"The Senate Democrats have requested the assistance of the Oregon
State Police to bring back their colleagues to finish the work they
committed to push forward," Brown said on Thursday, adding "As the
executive of the agency, I am authorizing the State Police to fulfill
the Senate Democrats’ request."
(Of note, Oregon House Democrats once fled the capitol in 2001 for
five days over a redistricting proposal - which Brown said at the time
was "appropriate under the circumstances.)
Sen. Brian Boquist (R) didn't take too kindly to Brown's threat -
telling a reporter he was prepared for a bloody standoff if state
troopers show up for him. Boquist had previously told Brown that "hell
is coming to visit you personally" if she went forward with the
"Send bachelors, and come heavily armed; I’m not going to be a
political prisoner in the state of Oregon, it’s just that simple,"
Oregon state senator @BrianBoquistGOP said if R's walk out to stop
a vote on Cap and Trade and @OregonGovBrown sends state police to
bring him back, they should be single and well armed. Your take?
— Pat Dooris (@PatDooris) June 19, 2019
Meanwhile, Oregon's Senate President Peter Courtney's office told
ABC13 that each missing Senator was hit with a $500 fine on Friday,
which would continue daily until they vote on the legislation.
Republicans immediately pushed back.
"We will file legal action," said Sen. Tim Knopp, a Republican
from Bend who has said he has been in three states in the past three
days. "If they were trying to bring us back, threatening to arrest us
and impose fines isn't going to work."
Senate Majority Leader Ginny Burdick said Republicans have no
legal recourse as the fine is explicitly written in statute. A
GoFundMe to cover the rogue lawmakers' expenses and fines raised
nearly $30,000 in less than a day. State ethics laws prohibit
officials from receiving gifts exceeding $50, so it's unclear whether
senators could access the money. -ABC13
State police, meanwhile, will have the ability to track down senators
and force them into a patrol car to return to the capitol, though the
agency promises to use "polite communication" and patience throughout
If Boquist starts shooting, we imagine that could change rapidly.