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Sunday, January 13, 2008

Kroger wins debate

At least, so says Kroger.

Comments (18)

I was there and I think it was a tie between Kroger and Macpherson. That means Kroger underperformed and Mac outperformed their respective expectations, and the expectations game is everything going into and coming out of debates.

Ultimately, I think Kroger's outspoken support of Measure 11 mandatory minimum sentences will undermine his primary candidacy. Macpherson has the right vision of fairness and justice in enforcing Oregon's laws, and that's why I am supporting him.

You are off about Measure 11 and expectations.

Kroger is not an “outspoken” supporter of Measure 11, the DAs asked him about the measure and he explained his position. More importantly, Macpherson took the same policy position. Macpherson has not called for any changes to Measure 11 and he did nothing to modify Measure 11 while Chair of the Judiciary Committee. The two candidates have the same position, so the issue is basically moot. If Macpherson took a new position at the debate, I apologize but if you are referring to that stuff on Blue Oregon, you are mistaken.

Second, I doubt that the expectation game will be an issue since there was no media coverage going into the debate and almost no coverage after the fact. The expectation game only matters if people had expectations.

Anyone have a link to a transcript or a video of this event?

The majority of Democrats supported, and still support, Measure 11 and will support the upcoming ballot measure on additional mandatory minimum sentences. The last thing Oregon needs is another soft on crime Attorney General.

I'm not so sure I'd be trumpeting the Leonard/Sten endorsements if I were in his shoes.

That could cost him as many votes as it draws.

It certainly gives me pause.

Thanks to everyone who came out for today's debates. We'll have videos up on the Bus Project website as soon as possible. Keep your eyes peeled this week.

I was also there, and I thought Kroger bested Macpherson. Mac did a fine job, but after the debate I was left with a very clear sense of where Kroger stands and what he'll do, but less certain about Mac.

One thing that's fascinating is their different styles. Macpherson is absolutely the "Oregon" candidate, pretty laid back, told a story of writing for his high school paper, says the things that most people want to hear. Kroger is aggressive and direct -- I felt like I was sitting on the jury when he was making his closing argument. Personally, I think that's what we need in an AG, but I also know that many Oregonians will be turned off by Kroger's style. We'll see.

One note: Kroger stuck around for at least three hours after the debate, shaking hands and asking questions. I don't know if Mac was still there or not, but I greatly respect Kroger's willingness to engage in one-on-one dialogue.

I was there for the debate as well, and Mile's comments were correct, and Kroger was also there on Friday and I agree with Miles was more than willing to engage in one on one dialog. Macpherson was as Miles said laid back, no tie, vs tie on Kroger, as noted the folksy story about his rebel years on the high school newspaper being censored then printing an underground uncensored version called the "shaft" but don't think for a minute he was laid back. He got his digs in referring to Kroger as "The Professor" (something you should appreciate Jack) and subtlety pointing out he was not a native but a recent transplant. Macpherson also had the transcript in front of him and was ready to issue a sound bite on Measure 11 as noted by "Not so Sure". I like Macpherson, he is a likable solid guy the establishment can depend on, but he is part of that "take care of your own" group that has been in power for many years using the old chit pile. Kroger made a good point about DEQ violations that have gone on for years unpunished, there has been what you have pointed out influence peddling going on for years, and least we forget the rape of a 14 year old girl, as well as, $40,000 consulting fees from SAIF Vicki Walker reminded us about in the following Secretary of State debate.

True that, Swimmer. Mac did launch some missiles at Kroger, particularly on Measure 11. What was lost on me, however, was how they differed. The both support Measure 11 in general, and they both oppose Mannix's absurd attempt to expand it to property crimes. Perhaps there's some subtlety that I missed in their positions, because for me Macpherson's attacks fell flat.

I was there too and I came away very impressed with both of them. (Full disclosure: I have contributed to Kroger.)

I do think that if Kevin Mannix ends up as the GOP nominee for AG, Kroger is by far the better Democratic candidate to demolish both Mannix and his misbegotten Measure 40 or whatever number it ends up with, extending mandatory minimum sentences without drug treatment for property crimes. Kroger has the experience and speaks with the firm authority to slice-and-dice Mannix and his arguments.

I find it interesting that Shannon Mills is painted to be a random audience member that was swayed by Kroger's performance. Shannon worked for Ben Unger, Kroger's campaign manager, on the Yes on 49 campaign and was seen all weekend sitting at the Kroger table collecting contact info. Maybe an unbiased undecided stranger who was swayed would make this "press release" more convincing?

Also, I heard that the Kroger team tried to pull some shenanigans with the debate format.

All this makes me push my support towards Greg.

Ben Unger is not Kroger campaign manager, Harry Wilson is the campaign manager. That OR Politicker site got that wrong awhile back. Unger is with Brad Avakian.

I'd love to hear what Ben Unger has to say about that. Last I spoke with him, he called himself John's campaign manager.

Yeah, someone should ask Brad Avakian why his "campaign manager" was talking to Kroger before the debate and then watched? Furthermore, Ben was not even in the room during Brad's SOS debate.

I know for a fact that Harry WIlson is John Kroger's campaign manager (or was at 12:30 pm Sunday in any event).

I was John's campaign manager during the early campaign. I now head up the policy and fund raising work and Ben is the campaign manager.

I don't understand your comment Mr. Rivers,

"Also, I heard that the Kroger team tried to pull some shenanigans with the debate format."

Can you explain, it appeared the format was a bit confusing but identical to the Secretary of State Debate that followed. If anything questions like the budget for the office should have favored the person who voted for that budget serving in the senate. The whole buzzer thing and answers up on the screen, would have benefited from a dry run of the props and visual aids prior to the candidates getting up there.

I heard that both campaigns disagreed with the changing of the format and that in the end nothing changed. The in debate glitches had nothing to do with the two campaigns, as is my understanding.

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