Democratic challenger wants region to move forward

Faith Leith, Democratic candidate for the 56th Oregon House District, spoke to voters in Lakeview on Thursday, July 23.

Faith Leith, Democratic candidate for the 56th Oregon House District, talked to voters in Lakeview on Thursday, July 23.

Leith graduated from UCLA with a degree in political science and afterwards worked in the United States House of Representatives Rules Committee and for the Jimmy Carter Presidential campaign.

“I learned early, hands on, how bills become law,” said Leith.

When she moved to Oregon she lived in the Oregon City area and became a local leader and neighborhood coordinator. She moved to Klamath Falls after she retired. When she heard that E. Werner Reschke was not going to have an opponent in either the primary or general election she decided to throw her hat into the ring, to be a voice for the district.

“Political winds are changing in this district and it is not right that Reschke is running unopposed,” said Leith.

She has four main priorities that she is basing her campaign on: affordable healthcare, she is in favor of a public option; affordable housing, which would help those who are homeless or struggling to pay rent, and find a solution that is cost effective and humane; alternative farming to conserve water. Leith wants to help farmers and ranchers explore alternative crops and other ways to raise food than the traditional way. She believes in the long run this would help to save water in the region, as she said droughts are coming more often and farmers need to be prepared and help to raise non-traditional crops. One area she wants to explore is helping local farmers grow hemp, which uses less water and can be used for more purposes. She said she wants to address the water issue in Salem, as it has often been ignored and overlooked.

“Unlike my opponent I am willing to have town halls in the district to listen to the voters,” said Leith.

Reschke has not really had any town halls except for a few outside of Klamath Falls. Leith said if she is elected she will hold regular town halls throughout the entire district, and not just with other state legislators.

She said that this year has been an interesting one with COVID impacting the way campaigns have been run, and how to reach out to voters, especially younger people who are eager for change and feel that they are not getting that change from their current representatives.

She wants to help move the southern Oregon region forward and not to look backwards anymore. She said that the region needs to look forward and invest more in renewable energy, not just energy producing projects, but also manufacturing facilities that create solar panels and wind turbines.

The 56th Oregon House District includes southern Klamath and Lake counties, including the communities of Klamath Falls, Lakeview, Bly, Beatty, Malin, and Merrill.

Leith can be reached at

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