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Oregon official leaves GOP over 'racism,' 'misogyny' of Trump administration
An elected official in Oregon who has been a Republican for four decades announced that she is becoming a Democrat because of the Trump administration.
Lori Stegmann, who has served as Multnomah County commissioner since 2016, told The Oregonian in an interview that she has changed her political affiliation.
"[I] cannot condone the misogyny, the racism, and the unethical and immoral behavior of the current administration," Stegmann said.
Stegmann, a small business owner and insurance agent, describes herself as a political moderate, according to The Oregonian. She said that the Democratic Party is a "big tent party."
"I have not changed, but the Republican Party most certainly has," she said.
She added that the separations of thousands of migrant families at the U.S.-Mexico border under President Trump's "zero tolerance" immigration policy also prompted her to become a Democrat. Stegmann was born in South Korea and adopted by American parents.
Now a naturalized citizen, she told The Oregonian that Trump's portrayal of immigrants as dangerous to the U.S. economy is "false."
"I think people need to see we're all immigrants," she said.
Though all seats on the county commission are nonpartisan, Stegmann told The Oregonian that the decision to switch parties was important to her personal values.
"This decision is about who I am, what I believe in and my core values," she said. "And if you don't stand for something, then you stand for nothing."
"I prefer to stand," she added. "And now I stand with the Democrats."