B.A., Eastern Oregon State College; J.D., Lewis & Clark Law School
KEY HEALTH LINK
Bentz’s wife is a veterinarian. He cosponsored legislation in the Oregon legislature supporting health care issues such as vision tests, home visits for new moms and rare diseases.
Oregon State Senator (30th district), 2018-2020; Oregon House of Representatives (60th district), 2008-2018
2020 ELECTION CONTEXT
Bentz won the GOP nomination to replace retiring Rep. Greg Walden, earning 31.4% of the vote in a 11-candidate primary.
Greg Walden (R), retired
MOST RECENT PROFESSION
Oregon State Senator (30th district);
Bentz practices ranch organization and water law at an Oregon law firm.
Bentz practices ranch organization and water law at an Oregon law firm. In 2008, Bentz was appointed to the Oregon House of Representatives after the resignation of the representative in District 60. After a decade in the State House, Bentz was appointed to an open seat in the Oregon Senate in 2018. His latest committee positions in the Oregon Senate were:
Joint Transportation Development Committee, Oregon State Legislature
Environment and Natural Resources Committee, Oregon State Senate
Finance and Revenue Committee, Oregon State Senate, Vice-Chair
Judiciary Committee, Oregon State Senate
Carbon Reduction Committee, Oregon State Legislature, Co-Vice Chair
Tax Expenditures Committee, Oregon State Legislature, Co-Vice Chair
Bentz received national notoriety in June 2019 when he and 10 other Republican state senators for Oregon refused to show up for work and went into hiding to prevent a vote on HB2020, a cap-and-trade proposal that would possibly lower greenhouse gas emissions and increase fuel taxes.
On The Issues
Bentz does not support mask mandates, thought he does support educating people about the risks of not wearing a mask.
Bentz wants to repeal and replace the ACA, saying, "I strongly oppose government run health care... I believe Obamacare should be replaced with solutions that focus on free market principles to help drive down the skyrocketing cost of health care." He supports permitting individuals and small businesses to purchase group insurance plans and allowing consumers to buy health insurance plans across state lines.
As a state senator, Bentz voted against a bill to provide a pathway for the governor to approve interstate marijuana commerce. He said he preferred to wait for the federal government to take action.
MENTAL HEALTH AND ADDICTION
In the Oregon House, Bentz sponsored a bill allowing judges to waive unpaid criminal fines for people who can prove that the fine poses a financial hardship preventing them from completing drug and alcohol treatment as part of their sentence.
Bentz introduced HB3093, a bill requiring pharmaceutical manufacturers to report to the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services the total amount of money spent on patient assistance programs.
Bentz is the original co-sponsor on a successful bill (SB740) to require health benefit plans that cover radiation therapy for cancer to cover proton beam therapy on a similar basis.
VETERANS HEALTH CARE
Bentz was an original sponsor on a bill that would protect funding for the Oregon Department of Veterans Affairs.
Bentz is pro-life, only supporting abortion in cases when the mother's life is at risk. Bentz is a former board member and vice-chair of Project Dove, a domestic violence prevention organization. He is an original cosponsor of successful legislation that provides voluntary nurse home visits to families with infants up to six months of age through a program called Family Connects Oregon.
OTHER HEALTH CARE ISSUES
He is a cosponsor of a successful Oregon Senate bill that provides voluntary nurse home visits to families with infants up to six months of age, a program called Family Connects Oregon. Bentz supports medical malpractice reform to curb frivolous lawsuits and promote patient safety. He is opposed to harvesting stem cells from embryos. Bentz cosponsored an unsuccessful bill to provide vision screenings in schools. He also coauthored an unsuccessful bill to appoint a Rare Disease Ombudsman.
DID YOU KNOW?
Bentz owns a 100-acre alfalfa farm. He is the second of seven children.