Last year, Rep. Dennis Richardson (R-Your Inbox) earned his title as Oregon’s Spam King by filing public records requests with dozens of state agencies in order to get his hands on the email addresses of more than a half-million Oregonians.
Basically, if you’d ever emailed an agency, signed up for a service, were employed by a public agency, etc., you landed on his list.
He then used those email addresses to send unsolicited political emails in support of his extreme right-wing agenda. He even crashed the legislature’s servers once during session when he sent out a massive email to hundreds of thousands of people.
That angered countless people, who never asked to be signed up for Richardson’s self-serving propaganda.
(And now, of course, he’s running for governor.)
In this past session, legislators responded by passing a bill protecting the email addresses given to state agencies, as a direct result of Richardson’s scheme. (Interestingly, Richardson voted for it.)
But. The law doesn’t go into effect until Jan. 1.
Enter Jeff Kropf–former legislator, former conservative radio host, former head of the Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity–who has decided to take a page from Richardson by filing public records requests with even more state agencies before the clock runs out.
Kropf now runs something called the “Oregon Capitol Watch Foundation,” which bills itself as conservative watchdog group… but whose only visible activity so far (besides keeping Kropf employed) is driving around a giant pink pig. (Seriously.)
But he’s one-upping Richardson, casting the net even wider. The full extent of his scheme isn’t yet known, but Kropf has reportedly filed records requests with the Oregon Arts Commission and other arts and culture groups–which weren’t part of Richardson’s initial ploy.
What does that mean for you? That you can expect to start getting unsolicited political email from Kropf and the Oregon Capitol Watch Foundation, pushing their right-wing agenda of tax cuts for the rich and more pain for working people.
“We’ll do whatever we can to obtain those email addresses and communicate with Oregonians,” Kropf told Willamette Week. “We’re afforded this opportunity. Anyone is, as it stands.”