On Sept. 11, 2001, almost 3,000 innocent lives were lost in America in a multi-pronged terrorist attack upon the United States. This attack and loss of life represented the greatest failure of America’s government in our history. A primary role of government, for which we voluntarily surrender some of our freedoms and will pay $4.85 trillion in taxes for in 2015, is public safety. The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States found that between 1998 and 2001, across the government, there were failures of imagination, policy, capabilities, and management. All this allowed the 9/11 attack to succeed.
The terrorist attack of Dec. 2 in San Bernardino, CA resulted in 14 innocent dead and 21 wounded. We must study and discover the failures in our security apparatus that kept our government agencies from preventing this attack and protecting our citizens. I have already heard some commentators stating that such lone wolf attacks, originating from sleeper cells that include American born citizens, cannot be prevented. This analysis is false. With the vast resources available to America’s law enforcement and security apparatus, with the use of imagination and correct policies, the citizens of America should expect to be safe from terrorist attacks on our home soil. Individuals within our law enforcement and security apparatus who feel that such attacks are not preventable need to be replaced by individuals who can prevent such attacks.
As your Governor, I will ensure that federal, state, and local officials will work together to ensure the safety of Oregon’s citizens. I will not fail the citizens of Oregon in this most important task.
My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families of this heartbreaking attack.