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The art and science of the interview

Oregon2020 – Bob Neimeyer

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These transcripts are presented to help users quickly find information they are searching for within the interview. Keywords may be searched using the CTL-F function. The software used provides a very rough but phonetically accurate transcription and for the most part, punctuation is omitted. Human speech patterns, being unique, make reading the interview transcript more difficult than listening to the interview audio file. It is recommended that users use the transcript and audio file together. For more information, visit the Candidate Interview Project at http://Oregon2020.business.site.

This transcript is of the Bob Neimeyer interview.

DM – Don Merrill
BN – Bob Neimeyer

00:00 DM – I’m don merrill and I’m talking with Bob Niemeyer’s mr neimeyer is running for Oregon House District 35 in Tigard Mr Neimeyer welcome

00:08 BN – thank you

00:10 DM – on your website you have a statement titled why Run where you ask whether certain outcome that you describe as negative in Oregon were intended by Democratic lawmakers and you make a distinction between lifestyle and life for Oregon residents can you explain what you see as the intentions of the left and and talk about the difference between your definitions of life and lifestyle

00:34 BN – Ill start with the difference between life and lifestyle learning to me having a lifestyle basically has no tomorrow whatever you do that day is all that matters to you day by day and having a life means that you plan ahead and intended to do other things down the road such as build a career or have a job or something like that that extends much much farther than whatever you can manage to get a hold of in one day like a heroin addict I mean they live literally a lifestyle of whatever it takes to get their day taken care of they do it all over the next day very much like what’s going on in our legislature whatever they can do for one year to get away with and doesn’t really matter

01:28 DM – one of the things you have said on your website that you want is you want the removal of the emergency clause from the Oregon Constitution

01:35 BN – yes completely taken out

01:36 DM – why is that first of all explain what the emergency clause is and then tell me why want it removed

01:40 BN – well emergency clause is something that goes back clear to the starting of the state I can understand how they would have done that in 1859 given the looming civil war and the need for an extra northern state on the north side and when I first started all of this stuff back in 2014 I was on the side of the emergency clause because I could see how it could be something that was actually necessary should there be an event that would require us to shell out a bunch of money for the earthquake

02:19 DM – earthquake thats what I was thinking too

02:21 BN – yes if the big what happens were not going to want a bunch of people to say we’re going to do a referendum to keep the Oregon from spending the money on lets just say coos Bay because theyve got a lot of damage to fix but then again whos gonna say they don’t need the help that’s what convinced me that the emergency clause has to go today it it’s a political weapon at this point to force things onto the the people that in many cases is what you don’t want

02:52 DM – if I understand the emergency clause it is a provision that allows a bill that becomes law to be enacted immediately rather than waiting for the beginning of the new calendar year or after a 60 or 90 day period

03:07 BN – But it also prevents people from doing referendums against the removal or stoppage of the passage of a law

03:14 DN – and that’s bad why

03:16 BN – because if there’s no way to undo something that the legislature has done then there’s no buffer against the legislature doing whatever they want

03:30 DM – how often do you feel the emergency clause is is used unjustifiably

03:34 BN – easily half

03:37 DM – give me an example of where you think it was used unjustifiably

03:39 BN – I have to think it has been a while since a forced something that nobody wanted on us I don’t have an example in the back of my head right now

03:54 DM – OK when we talked in 2016 you wanted a constitutional convention convened to remove the role of the U.S. Congress to ratify amendments article 5 was a hot concern at the time you said that’s what the framers intended for the states rather than the Congress to have a say over whether or not amendments became a part of the Constitution

04:21 BN – I want the convention where the states can create constitutional amendments outside of Congress we very much need to do a few very critical things such as term limits for instance I don’t know that I necessarily agree with the balanced-budget amendment because I think that would actually go the wrong way but it may take that in order to get Congress to stop wasting money the term limit thing should apply to all three branches of government I mean we already have on that prevents the president from doing two terms more than two terms but that I think that that should apply to Congress and it should also apply to the courts

05:11 DM – so the Supreme Court justices should not serve for life

05:13 BN – I don’t think so

05:17 DM – you said on your website representatives who are underpaid are tempted to take funds from other sources

05:24 BN – I personally believe that the legislature should be paid about the same as whatever a schoolteacher more or less about $60,000 a year but I also have got this other thing that I intended to publish as well in the website that I’m calling independent contractors the whole idea behind that is that they only receive money. They don’t get benefits they don’t get health insurance they don’t get anything but cash And they have to go pay their own taxes buy their own health insurance do everything had that people outside of the legislature do

06:08 DM – it sounds like you want to bring the legislature closer to the people that they serve

06:12 BN – yes right now I think there’s an awful lot of qualified candidates out there who just wont do it because it just gonna cost too much

06:22 DM – if the legislature continues to underpay legislators in and some are found to take funds from sources that compromise their role as a legislator should their punishment be lessened or eliminated or strengthened like what should happen

06:36 BN – I think they should be thrown out of the legislature

06:46 DM – so there is no excuse for it but what youre saying they shouldn’t have to suffer that kind of of of under underpaying

06:53 BN – underpaying gives them the excuse and when somebody has an excuse its an awful awful easy to look at other ways

07:02 DM – the US Supreme Court has just allowed the president to expand the list of countries that can have their citizens restricted from coming into the US if you were elected to the Oregon house would you work to introduce a version of of measure 105 which is the repeal of the state sanctuary law 61% of Oregonians voted it down 2018 would you work to bring it back from some version of that back

07:26 BN – I think sanctuary anything should be totally against the law they had no business risking the people of this state for sanctuary Multnomah County for instance has got an awful lot a crime out there and it’s all due to illegal aliens I know that right now that’s more or less about 85% of the crime that’s committed in Multnomah County is all being done by illegal aliens and they put them in jail and let them go again and they can’t keep them they can’t call up ice just doesn’t make sense to me why anybody would think that that sanctuary is good for the bad apples, if you will of the illegal aliens that come here

08:18 DM – you said our education system is being destroyed by

08:20 BN – completely destroyed by PERS

08:25 DM – you said our education system is being destroyed by PERS it it’s a connection that I’m not sure people always make can you tell me what you see that connection as being and since PERS is a problem that only seems to be getting worse how would you fix both problems

08:41 BN – well first of all they should have taken advantage of the fact that the federal government was creating things like 401(k)s or SEP’s for self-employed people and said okay were going to have you contribute to your own retirement and we’re going to get out of it had the state of Oregon discontinued PERS and told everybody that we have to put your 6% even if we give you a raise of 6% it goes into 401(k)s that we no longer have that accumulation of debt to the PERS program that we would be out of hock right now and that’s just from 2004 if we do that right now it’s probably going to take about 15 years to get to the same situation but it’s going to take time and we just have to got to stop giving away future benefits for nothing in in the PERS program

09:47 DM – so if you get to the Oregon house what you wanted to work for that

09:53 BN – exactly that discontinue it and and right now apparently I can’t say this for totally sure but apparently the governor is the one who actually can decide whether or not it can be discontinued there is no law per se that gives her and forces her to continue to give away retirement benefits now I’m not totally sure but I believe that the legislature could say we’re going to give everybody a 6% raise and that has to go to 401(k)s and be done with it I would like to also say that the vestment in the PERS program should take 10 years and what I would like to see it is an additional 3% from the state matching funds for you every year that you’re working towards your vestment you would basically get 10% of that 3% so that a person’s vestment in the system would ultimately wind up with 9% being of your pay being donated to your 401(k)s that you have control of in the banks and you can see that deposit that you have that you own rather than saying that I’m just gonna hope that the taxpayers are going to pay my retirement the rest of my life

11:27 DM – you supported hunters and and their clay pigeon device and and showed off your own golf ball device because you’re an engineer

11:38 BN – that’s right the last time I showed you the clay pidgeon thrower

11:43 DM – so being an engineer is in your DNA how how will you apply that kind of scientific method thinking to the squishyness of politics and the Oregon legislature

11:54 BN – things have to make sense to me theres no excuse for anything that that doesn’t make complete sense for how it start to finish and if you look at the cap And trade thing there is so much of that it just doesn’t make sense to me about why they’re doing it who is getting the money turning carbon into a commodity item based upon what the government does theyre creating an atmosphere that would to me be something easily turned into absolute total corruption

12:33 DM – well since you want to get to cap and trade lets talk about cap And trade

12:34 BN – okay

12:35 DM – Oregonians are really concerned about their environmental footprint the governors made cap And trade a priority you say cap And trade is a waste of taxpayer money but when what the US should be doing is developing clean technologies and exporting them to countries that are as dirty now as the US was 30 years ago but when a lot of those technologies that the US pioneered were being developed people said the development was hamstringing the American economy and the the manufacturing industry those countries might ask why should we pay the US for expensive technology when older technologies are working for us now just like they worked for you then

13:12 BN – well okay back then I believe they should pay for it now if they are actually in the mode of quote unquote saving the planet then we should be developing that technology and giving it to those countries that are necessarily making a mess of the environment

13:31 DM – give it to them

13:32 BN – yeah I mean how much aid do we give to other nations how much weapons do we give to other nations that they’re not paying for but the government bought them from the people with the taxes and stuff like that why can’t the government buy that technology from us and give it to a nation which is in really a mess that needs to be cleaned up cap and Trade the money that they take doesn’t have any direction where its gonna go they have no intention of dedicating that tax money towards anything that makes sense why tax if youre not going to do anything with it related to preventing the use of carbon there is nothing in the bill that says that that money is going to be used for either roads or for paying down PERS or for one iota of anything is just a big pot of cash thrown at the legislature to do whatever they want and you know perfectly well that under the current leadership that’s exactly what’ll happen

14:37 DM – the city of Portland is proposing to widen the I-5 lanes around the rose quarter to reduce clogged traffic Vancouver wants to restart talks with Portland over bridge to replace the defunct Columbia River Crossing idea that field a few years ago and of course there’s a lot of talk about toll roads but trimet is expanding bus and light rail service because it thinks that’s the answer to many of our traffic issues you oppose light rail

15:10 BN – completely

15:11 DM – so how do you fix the congestion problem not just im portland, I mean throughout the state throughout the western side of the state anyway

15:16 BN – why cant those businesses that have all those people coming into them be allowed to be out in McMinnville just as easily as portland why don’t they just go out there and spread out across the state to someplace else in and be able to have their employees have some space around the outside of them not have to deal with getting on a light rail system and spending a good deal of time trying to get to their job

15:45 DM – for a business to to just up and move out to McMinnville and all of its employees then have to move to to McMinnville or some other community I mean that’s that is not only hardship for the business on the assumption that you reducing traffic congestion but youre also asking families to move asking them to change their surroundings asking to change everything mean it seems it seems like a big ask

16:11 BN – yes but then look what happens to wherever they put in a light rail system it’s very specifically known that a lot of businesses fail because the light rail is too close them they put that light rail into Tigard for instance there is about 800 businesses that are going to have to move just because of that and I know two or three of them very specifically they are going to be wiped out because they they have to move 700 employees to someplace and then there’s no prospect of where anything actually go

16:52 DM – I want to talk a little bit about basic minimum wage in Portland for someone or in any city for someone have utilities they need to pay a monthly minimum even if they don’t use any of it for next and none of it average rent for a single apartment in portland is among the highest in the country basic food to meet minimum nutritional needs for one person is no less than hundred $200 a month out-of-pocket healthcare means getting sick or hurt and no way to get yourself the care you need if youre not making enough money plus to get around town let alone have any kind of social life means people have to have at least to trimet bus pass

17:33 BN – I believe those are $84 a month right now

17:36 DM – right but if you add all that up that’s more than anyone could make in a job that pays the federal minimum wage so what would you say to those people you know some of them your potential constituents who can’t get by without a mandatory minimum wage

17:52 BN – I got to ask what caused all of this stuff to be so expensive in terms of rent and things like that what has the state done that has caused rent to go up so high like for instance one of the key reasons that a lot of of places have not been built has to do with a whole bunch of the Oregon’s regulations for construction if you start out building a house now you will pay somewhere like $25,000 just to the city to go get it all proofed and if you are building an apartment complex paying $40,000 and in fees just to build one apartment complex it is the starting the amount of money you have to shell out has almost nothing to do with anything but regulation that just all wasted monies sent to the government for whoever has to handle it

19:04 DM – how you feel about the the city Council’s recent decision to make all single-family lots in Portland buildable for duplexes and triplexes some housing advocates even want 8 plexes that we that would help reduce the housing shortage at least

19:20 BN – it won’t reduce the cost of building it. You go out there lets just say you have two pieces of property and two houses on it and I can fit an eight Plex on there for rent how much is it gonna cost to get the permits to do exactly what the city wants you to do for instance

19:40 DM – okay lets talk about another piece of that of that scenario healthcare I had read on your website that you oppose single payer system

19:53 BN – okay thats being kind I’m totally 100% against a single-payer because there is absolutely no form of competition the other thing about single-payer is that there’s still taxes involved with it I know a lot of companies that make medical devices in fact that diabetic Lansing is a medical device the company that manufactures a lot of our parts pays a good share of taxes on the fact that they taking material and molded it and ship us parts just because of various different types of regulations and certifications that we have to live by because it is a medical device I mean okay there some that’s necessary but it shouldn’t cost as much as as their paying theyll still get taxed for their income tax or something like to go spend money that they earned at the company they pay taxes on that money they spent but getting that product from very beginning all the way to the patient if we were to take out all of those different areas that taxes can be taken out of the system and basically recycled that the government has all this money that can be put into healthcare is really been filtered out in that process if that were stopped the cost of healthcare go way back I’d like to see that type of thing put into place just because why should the government be taxing something and virtually everybody uses

21:42 DM – looking at your website I saw an article on the separation of church and state and I thought it was very interesting you compare the heavenly structure gods word reaching down to the flock and the human government structure and you seem to be saying there is no separation of church and state because the founders pattern the human structured government after how they saw the heavenly structure structured by God so if that’s true

22:11 BN – oh no I I say that is the separation

22:14 DM – that is separation

22:16 BN – that is the separation there are two things to believe in where you have God’s word the Bible and things like that then God and then the church and then the pastors or whatever you call them and then the flock and then the citizens at the bottom and then there’s in the United States states government there is the Declaration of Independence the Constitution the government as defined by the Constitution the elected officials that are running the government and then the political parties who are supposed to be stewards of the Constitution and then there’s people

22:55 DM – so you’re saying there parallel not overlaid on each other

22:58 BN – correct they are two separate columns of of things to believe in if they were one then you wouldn’t have a chance to at all to choose which God you wanted to believe in and the government could tell you which God you wanted believe in which is something that happened you know when King George was in charge of England I mean he made one church one nation type of thing and he could have unlimited control I put them at the same level I tried it to draw that thing where each one had the same importance over the top of the citizens

23:40 DM – but you’re saying there is a separation of church and state

23:41 BN – there is a separation and that’s what the founding fathers gave us when they created the Constitution to support the Declaration of Independence

23:48 DM – and and to avoid the creation of a national church a national religion

23:53 BN – that’s right

23:54 DM – okay

23:55 BN – then there’s the right now there’s a more or less a big old monster right in the middle thats trying to control both sides you know what is sharia law all about that literally mixes both of those together and look what that entire system has done sharia law is something it isn’t necessarily a Muslim believe there’s a lot of people that believe that the government and the religious things should go together and I look at many things that that the Democrats and the Republicans are trying to do as stewards of the Constitution and what I’m seeing is the Democrats not wanting to obey the Constitution they would rather have total control outside of the Constitution to me that is pushing towards having a religion if you will where you have the combination of the two that Monster in the middle

25:06 DM – I want to make sure I understand what is the monster in the middle

25:08 BN – when you have people in government who really do believe they can do anything that they wanted doing government and there’s no limits the Constitution is something they should avoid that’s the the monster that were seeing welling up right now particularly with everybody uses the the term deep state those people are all operating outside of the Constitution because they don’t think that the Constitution should be standing in their way

25:41 DM – you told the wilamette week a story last year about a machine called a sticker

25:50 BN – oh that was about my grandfather

25:52 DM – what is a sticker exactly

25:54 BN – see all of the molding thats got little curves to it and fancy different things a sticker is a machine we take a square block of of wood and run it through and it will cut the profile onto it its is got a spinning set of blades theyre razor-sharp and grandfather ran that sticker for pretty much about 10 years and they kept him doing it because he was so good at and he never lost a finger to me like I have woodworking equipment metalworking equipment prototyping equipment and I did something stupid and got my finger lopped off my fear was I would be letting them down my grandfather my father not so much losing a finger

26:44 DM – I wanted to soft of extend that to you in office sounds like what you’re saying is the standard that you have yourself are very high do you think that any those fears would follow you into office I mean not wanting to take a wrong political decision not wanting to make a wrong ruling

27:06 BN – that isn’t so much of fear as much as the taxpayers of this state are giving you tax dollars and you’re supposed to be stewards over that money and youre supposed to handle it properly and do what you’re supposed to do and right now that is not happening I’m actually disgusted with what they’re trying to do in Salem right now

27:31 DM – is there anything else I havent asked you that you want to mention

27:33 BN – youre doing pretty good another thing that sickens me is a use of the police fire and schools as bargaining chips to get people to get tricked into spending more money on taxes because when you you tug on that kind of of heartstring or something like that thats aggravating and that’s that is

28:04 DM – you just clenched your fists

28:07 BN – yeah I think that that bothers me more than anything else is them using a person’s well-being his safety do this for the children type of thing to extort as far as I’m concerned tax money away from the taxpayers

28:27 DM – this is my last question this is your third [fourth] run for office in six years you ran for the U.S. House District 1 2014

28:36 BN – yes

28:37 DM – you ran for governor ran for governor to complete the term of john kitzhaber but lost to bud pierce in the primary with 70% of the vote in 2016 you ran for House District 35 and 2018 and and lost Margaret Doherty with 32% of the vote she is not running this time

28:54 BN – correct

28:55 DM – your running for that seat again Oregonians seem a little cool to your candidacy why should they vote for you

29:02 BN – I believe that their tax dollars should be protected and used the way they’re supposed to be used not the the way they’ve been used

29:12 DM – well mr Niemeyer I really appreciate you taking the time to come and talk to me thank you

29:15 BN – thank you for having me the I really appreciated it youre my first interview this time and I’ve been holding out to make sure that you got it

29:24 DM – I’m Don merrill and I’ve been talking with Bob Niemeyer Mr Niemeyer is a Republican he’s running for the Oregon house in district 35 mr neimeyer thanks for talking with me

29:27 BN – thank you for having me appreciate it

Written by Interviewer

March 2, 2020 at 13:19

Posted in Scratchpad

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