Senator Jeff Kruse: "Tuesday could be a very interesting day in the Senate."
Just two weeks into the legislative session and state legislators are rebounding from Governor John Kitzhaber's resignation announcement Friday.
His resignation is official Wednesday but on Tuesday, the low-carbon standard bill, officially referred to as Senate Bill 324, will go to the full Senate for a vote.
The Democrat backed bill is one that lawmakers say was scheduled to pass. Republicans argue it will hike gas prices.
"The fact that that can clearly be connected to both John and Cylvia, it might be a little harder for Democrats to support it," Republican Senator, Jeff Kruse, told KATU News via FaceTime from his Roseburg home.
"It's unfortunate when politics get in the way of policy but I think on some of these things, that may be the reality," Kruse continued.
He says the fact that the focus has shifted from the current legislative session to a historic resignation is not a GOP problem, but one that could affect lawmakers across the aisle.
According to Kruse, legislators may be less likely to back a bill tied to either Kitzhaber or his fianc, First Lady Cylvia Hayes, because of the ongoing federal criminal investigation and the allegations surrounding it.
"I think from the perspective of the Legislature, we have a finite period of time to get our work done and my hope is that we stay focused on doing our work," Kruse said. "Tuesday could be a very interesting day in the Senate."
KATU News also contacted senate Democrats. Senator Betsy Johnson referred any comment to House Speaker, Rep. Tina Kotek's statement on Friday where she applauded Governor Kitzhaber's work, supported his resignation and said, ""The Oregon Legislature will meet the challenges facing Oregon and stands ready to show that even in the most trying times, we are committed to doing the right thing for the people of our state."
Democratic Senator Michael Dembrow issued this statement saying,"I know that some in the GOP and the Oregonian have called for us to postpone consideration of the issue because it is "tainted" by the influence of Cylvia Hayes. This strikes me as a desperate last-ditch effort to stop a program that I believe has won the support of a majority of the Legislature."
Dembrow later wrote in the emailed statement, "The Legislature's support for the Low-Carbon Fuel Standard program is in no way "tainted" or "influenced" by anything (Hayes) has done. It's time to move forward. "
An email into the Secretary of State -- and soon-to-be Governor -- Kate Brown's spokesperson on whether she thinks the resignation is going to derail bills, was not replied.