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Knute Buehler, considering a congressional run, plans to vote for Trump in 2020

While considering a congressional run, the Republican is publicly supporting the president after repeatedly criticizing him during his 2018 campaign for governor.

MEDFORD, Ore. — Former Oregon Republican gubernatorial candidate Knute Buehler plans to vote for President Trump in 2020.

Buehler, who is considering a run for Congress in Oregon’s 2nd District, told KOBI-TV in Medford that he believes the president’s policies are aligned with that part of the state.

“I would certainly vote for President Trump,” Buehler said. “His policies I think are a much better fit for the 2nd District now then what I see coming from the Democratic challengers with regards to especially taxes, preserving health care, the Second Amendment and managing our federal lands.”

Oregon’s 2nd Congressional District covers the entire eastern side of the state as well as the Medford area.

In October, Congressman Greg Walden announced his intent to retire and not seek reelection in 2020. Buehler wrote on Twitter at that time that he is “considering” running in that district.

RELATED: Knute Buehler, others, consider congressional run

While campaigning for governor in 2018, Buehler repeatedly spoke out against President Trump. During a debate that aired on KGW, Buehler said he doesn’t approve of the president’s leadership, citing his “politically divisive speech,” including his tweets. He also mentioned that leaders should “build bridges, not walls.”

On Friday, Buehler told KOBI that he did not vote for either President Trump or Hillary Clinton in 2016. While he said he plans to vote for Trump in 2020, he also said he’s not afraid to disagree with him.

“I have no problem supporting President Trump when President Trump is right, and likewise, you know I'm independent-minded, when I think President Trump is wrong and it's important for the congressional district or the non-metro area in Oregon, I'll speak out and say where it's wrong also," he said.

RELATED: Buehler plans to stay engaged in Oregon issues

Buehler said right now he is deciding with his family whether he’ll run for Congress.

“I see this not only just as a professional decision, but this is our life, this is a lifestyle,” he said.

Before and during his run for governor, Buehler served as a state representative for the Oregon House district surrounding Bend.

RELATED: Brown, Buehler hold final governor's debate (Watch replay)