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Home » Top Stories » BREAKING: Lawsuit filed to disqualify Rep. Christine Goodwin from representing House District 4 and running for Senate District 2

BREAKING: Lawsuit filed to disqualify Rep. Christine Goodwin from representing House District 4 and running for Senate District 2

Update (3/16/24 1:12PM): The Eagle asked John West why he filed the lawsuit. Here is his reply:

“As a commissioner, I represent all of Josephine County citizens. We depend upon honest leaders to represent us in Salem.

It was my obligation and duty as a private citizen to do this for our district. There could be serious consequences if the Democrats use this information in the future. 

Republicans support honest government. We need to live this or otherwise we’re no better than Democrats. 

I have no issue with Christine as a person. It’s about ‘Do you live in our Senate District 2 and did you live in our district when you ran for House District 4?’

Christine has been given numerous opportunities over the past 4 or 5 months to make this right. She did not show us why we’re wrong so she left left us with one choice which was to sue the Secretary of State to make it right.

Just remember everyone is supposed to follow the Oregon constitution, elected officials are not exempt.”

Late Friday afternoon on March 15, a lawsuit was filed against Oregon Secretary of State LaVonne Griffin-Valade by Attorney Stephen Joncus on behalf of John West, Winnie, Edgar Pelfrey and Victoria Marshall. The lawsuit contends that Rep. Christine Goodwin does not reside in House District 4 nor does she reside in Oregon Senate District 2 where she is running against Dr. Noah Robinson to replace outgoing Senator Art Robinson.

Here is the Motion from the 69-page complaint and temporary restraining order filing:

“Pursuant to ORCP 79B, Plaintiffs move for a temporary restraining order that:

“(1) compels Oregon secretary of State LaVonne Griffen-Valade [sic] (“Griffen-Valade”) to disqualify Christine Goodwin as Representative for House District 4; and

“(2) prohibits Griffen-Valade from placing Christine Goodwin’s name on the ballot for the May 21, 2024 primary election. Placement of Christine Goodwin’s name on the ballot for the Republican primary election for State Senate District 2.

“West further moves the court for an order requiring Griffen-Valade to show cause, if there by any, why the order requested above should not continue and remain in effect during the pendency of this action. Plaintiff has no adequate remedy at law. “

The lawsuit them supports its case with the following points and authorities:

1. Christine Goodwin lives at 317 Aker Drive which she and her husband Lynn have owned since October 1, 1991. A series of exhibits show this address as Goodwin’s primary residence.

Exhibit 5 is the Articles of Incorporation for Goodwin Properties Inc signed under penalty of perjury on July 6, 2022.

Exhibit 6 is a “Statement of Organization for Candidate Committee” for “Christine Goodwin for Oregon” which shows her address as 317 Aker Drive and is effective between 11/7/2021 and 11/16/2021.

Exhibit 2 shows the “results of ClusterMaps public records service , showing Christine Goodwin’s address as 317 Aker.”

This is important because 317 Aker Drive is within Senate District 1 and House District 2 and not within Senate District 2 or House District 4.

“2. Christine Goodwin falsely claims to live at Falk Estates Vineyards.” On 11/1/2023, Goodwin used 721 Bramblewood Lane as her residence. On December 27, 2021, the Douglas County voter record for Christine Goodwin shows a change of residential address from 317 Aker Drive to 721 Bramblewood Lane.

The lawsuit states the “address 721 Bramblewood is the Falk Estate Vineyards wine tasting room. John West called the Falk Estate Vineyards in the Fall of 2023 and asked for Christine Goodwin. He was told no one was there by that name and that they did not know who Christine Goodwin was. He asked if anyone lives at 721 Bramblewood and was told that no one lives there.”

Exhibit 13 (cropped)

“3. Christine Good win is not qualified to represent House District 4. The address 7621 Bramblewood Lane is within House District 4, but Christine Goodwin does not live there. Christine Goodwin was elected to House District 4 on 11/8/2022. To be qualified to represent House District 4, Christine Goodwin must have lived in House District 4 for one year prior to the election. That one-year cutoff date is 11/8/2022.

“On 7/6/2022, eight months after the 11/8/2021 cutoff date, Christine Goodwin declared under penalty of perjury that her address 317 Aker Drive. In her State of Organization for her campaign, effective to 11/16/2021, eight days after the 11/8/2021 cutoff date, Christine Goodwin listed her address as 317 Aker Drive. Christine Goodwin changed her purported residence address to 721 Bramblewood Lane from 317 Akler Drive in her voting records on 12/27/2021, seven weeks after the cutoff date.

“Christine Goodwin is not qualified to represent House District 4. She intentionally perpetrated a fraud on the citizens of House District 4 in order to get elected. She must be disqualified as the representative for House District 4.

“Plaintiffs request the Court to issue an injunction requiring the Secretary of State to declare that Christine Goodwin is disqualified as House District 4 Representative.”

“4. Christine Goodwin is not qualified to represent Senate District 2. Christine Goodwin is continuing to perpetrate a fraud by running for the Senate District 2 seat when she lives in Senate District 1.”

At this point the lawsuit footnotes the Oregon Constitution Article 4 Section 8 which requires one year residency in the district to run for public office.

Then the lawsuit quotes ORS 254.165(1) which states, “If the filing officer determines that a candidate has died, withdrawn or become disqualified, or that the candidate will not qualify in time for the office if elected, the name of the candidate may not be printed on the ballots or, if ballots have already been printed, the ballots must be reprinted without the name of the candidate before the ballots are delivered to the electors.”

Oregon’s Secretary of State is the filing officer for state senators and representatives. This is why Griffin-Valade was named in the lawsuit.

The lawsuit requests the Court issue an injunction to Griffin-Valade to not print Christine Goodwin’s name on the ballots for the May 21 primary election. The injunction must be made by March 20 to keep Goodwin’s name off the ballot.

The lawsuit then describes why this injunction will prevent irreparable damages from occurring.

“Irreparable injury will occur if Christine Goodwin’s name is place on the ballot for the May 21 election because votes for other candidates will be diluted by votes for Christine Goodwin, who is not qualified to represent Senate District 2. The primary campaign would also unnecessarily cost her competitor money that could be reserved for the general election, thus weakening the Republican nominee for Senate District 2. Christine Goodwin could conceivably win the nomination for Senate District 2, a seat that she is not qualified to hold, leaving the Republicans without a candidate for the Senate District 2 seat. “

Should the Secretary of State support Goodwin as being qualified to run for Senate District 2, West asks for immediate production of Goodwin’s drivers license, auto registrations, and a redacted first page of her income tax returns.

The lawsuit finishes by asserting that it would be “unlawful to place her on the ballot for the May 21, 2024 primary.”

The rest of the 69-page document has affidavits and exhibits supporting the motion for the injunction.

At a Republican meeting in December, I asked Rep. Goodwin about her residence being outside her district. She told me, “Don’t worry about it.”

Now Rep. Goodwin has a lot to be worried about based on the evidence presented in this lawsuit.