Yesterday afternoon I wrote in outrage about reports of apparent fraud in the City of Portland's new taxpayer financing system for local politicians' campaigns. A fellow by the name of Vladimir Golovan (pictured here with the governor) claims to have collected hundreds of signatures and $5 qualifying contributions for candidate Emilie Boyles from his contacts in the Slavic community, but many of those whose names appear on Boyles's contributor list now claim not to have made the contributions. Some told a reporter that they didn't even know who Boyles was. Some of the signatures also looked forged.
Today we find out that the same guy also allegedly collected several hundred signatures (and allegedly, contributions) for Lucinda Tate, who also filed for a $150,000 handout from the taxpayers, just in time to beat yesterday's filing deadline. Some of the same purported donors who told The Oregonian that they didn't know Boyles also appear on Tate's contributor list.
Adding to the insanity are the comments of the city's elections officer, who says it's too late to do anything about the $140,000-plus that's been paid to Boyles, even if her reports were false.
Ladies and gentlemen, pardon me, but exactly what in the name of God is going on in Portland? Our city government has truly lost all semblance of rationality.
There's no sense repeating my rant from yesterday. Read it here if you like. But double it for today.
This is what happens when Erik Sten sets out to clean up municipal politics. It looks more dishonest than ever. That fellow could bungle a nocturnal emission.
Anyway, here's what I think needs to happen -- FWIW, as the kids say. The O reporter who uncovered the problems, Anna Griffin, needs to swear out a couple of affidavits on what she's learned and have them delivered to the county d.a. and the state a.g. today. A serious investigation by professional law enforcement needs to be commenced immediately, as in yesterday. And if the city cuts the check to Tate without a thorough verification of her signatures and contributions, somebody ought to go to jail.