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State senator released from hospital, in recovery


JohnsonState Sen. Betsy Johnson, D- Scappoose, has been released from the hospital following surgery on a fractured pelvis.

The injury, the result of an early morning car crash April 22, has kept Johnson in surgery and treatment and away from Salem where Legislature hearings have continued without her.

"I'm doing everything I can do to fulfill my responsibilities and not let anybody down," she told the Spotlight. She has been taking calls and working on bills from her bed, and has joined into some sub-committee sessions by phone.

In "This Week with State Senator Betsy Johnson," a broadcast available on her website and area radio stations, Johnson says that because of her absence, the Senate has 15 Democrats and 14 Republicans. Sixteen votes are needed for the Senate to pass anything and bills can't pass without at least one Republican voting in favor of it.

"Obviously I'm crawling the walls," she told the Spotlight. "This is the busiest part of the session."

Johnson is currently recovering at a Portland skilled nursing facility. She hopes to return to Salem soon where she is co-vice chair of the Ways and Means Committee in charge of developing the state's budget. Upon her return to Salem, however, she will likely need to use an electric wheelchair and her mobility will be limited, according to an update on her Facebook page.

Johnson was injured in a car crash in Scappoose on her way to Salem April 22. Scappoose police say it appears the state senator rear ended another car. The driver was not injured, but Johnson was taken by ambulance to a Portland hospital.

Johnson said she is meeting with her surgeon next week to X-ray her injuries. She hopes to have a better idea of what comes next following this appointment.