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Brown's approval numbers have dropped

The governor's approval rating has dipped 13 points since April, while her disapproval rating has risen by six points.

CAPITAL BUREAU - Gov. Kate BrownOregon Gov. Kate Brown's approval rating has dipped about 13 percentage points since April, according to Morning Consult, which conducts a poll of the approval ratings of the nation's governors every quarter.

Last April, 58 percent of voters surveyed approved of Brown, while in January 2018, 45 percent of voters did.

And the number of voters who disapprove of the governor has climbed by about six percentage points since April 2017.

The numbers were touted by the Republican Governors Association, as well as conservative blog Oregon Catalyst, this week.

Brown, who is seeking reelection in 2018, is due to deliver her "State of the State" address Monday, Feb. 5.

It will be her third state of the state address since taking office in February of 2015 in the wake of the resignation of former Gov. John Kitzhaber, a fellow Democrat. (She gave "state of the state" addresses in 2015 and 2016, but not in 2017, when she gave an address upon her inauguration, according to Governor's Office records of her speeches).

Last year, Governing magazine deemed Brown's seat "potentially vulnerable" in the 2018 election.

Governing identified Republican candidates Dennis Richardson, the current secretary of state, or Rep. Knute Buehler, of Bend, as potential candidates who had a better chance of challenging Brown in 2018 than Republican Bud Pierce. Brown won the seat by 7 percentage points in 2016.

Buehler's campaign is underway, but Richardson, who has just a year under his belt as secretary of state, has not filed to run for governor.

In certain respects, the 2017 session was successful: lawmakers passed a comprehensive transportation package and a slew of legislation that was hailed by progressives across the country — such as the Reproductive Health Equity Act.

There's also talk of a "blue wave" in the 2018 midterms, a reactionary response to Republican control of the White House and Congress — and specifically the policies of President Donald Trump — that could mobilize left-leaning voters.

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