Background: in 2009 there was a bit of a scandal when two Democratic legislators (one from the Senate and one from the House) parlayed their positions in the state legislature to score cushy government jobs*. In response, the (Democratic-controlled) Oregon House of Representatives passed a bill imposing an one-year moratorium on taking state jobs on exiting legislators, unless those jobs were “publicly advertised and the state seeks out at least three qualified applicants.” The bill died in the (Democratic-controlled) Senate, apparently because the Senate didn’t want to offend the two aforementioned legislators.
But it’s 2011, and the Oregon House is now split 50/50 Democratic/Republican, and the bill (House Bill 3446) has been reintroduced in the House – and passed unanimously by that body. The ratio is still pretty lopsided Democratic in the Oregon Senate, but there may be more movement this go-round. If it doesn’t… well, it may become a bit of an election issue: apparently Oregon state politics are a bit notorious for their revolving-door system for legislators.
So we’ll see.
*This interpretation of events will no doubt offend some, but then I’ve never really felt bad about hurting the feelings of people who voluntarily apologize on behalf of other people who can go from $22 grand/year salaries to $95-122 grand/year salaries simply because they don’t feel like running for elections anymore.