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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on October 14, 2010 8:46 AM. The previous post in this blog was Theater of the absurd. The next post in this blog is Seattle bans phone book trash. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Endorsement time

The pundits are starting to line up and give you their scorecards of what and whom to vote for and against, and so it behooves us to try to do the same. It's quite a pile to plow through: You've got your candidates, and you've got your ballot measures.

Let's start with the candidates first. Alas, on most races, we're unable to offer any advice with confidence. In some races, it doesn't matter which candidate you pick -- disaster looms either way -- and some races just don't matter much.

Here are the few we find outside those categories, at least with almost three weeks left to go before the voting deadline:

State treasurer: Ted Wheeler. Here's the first politician who's said anything sensible about money in this state for a long time.

Metro president: Tom Hughes. Give business at least a glimmer of hope. The other guy is just a condo developer pal wrapped up in a green flag.

Multnomah County commissioner: Loretta Smith. We're trying to counteract the Dan Saltzman family money, which runs Portland nowadays. Smith's opponent, Karol Collymore, seems to be a potential second vote for her boss, Jeff Cogen; and Cogen is two peas in a pod with Saltzman. And so you'd think that a Saltzman nod to Collymore would be a given. It certainly was in the primary. But now Saltzman's equivocating, and the Saltzman family's pals at WW are endorsing Smith. I think that's a big head fake. If you're like me, and you're tired of the Saltzmans, Smith seems a better bet. (Then again, maybe they've embraced her because they've co-opted her -- who knows?)

If I lived in Salem, I'd vote for Schrader. If I lived in Eugene, I'd vote for DeFazio.

And sad to say, there's nobody else in the whole 136-page Voters' Pamphlet worthy of an endorsement. Dudley-Kitzhaber? Disaster either way. Earl Blumenauer? Opponents have no chance. Bus Kids in the Legislature? They're all in safe districts, and so let the Sten times roll. There are a lot of incumbents in that booklet to whom I would not entrust my dog for the weekend, but their opponents are even scarier or don't have a prayer.

The ballot measures are slightly more interesting, and we'll get to them next.

Comments (21)

One thing I don't understand about the governor's race, and I'm hoping the Republicans who hang here can illuminate me: What was so wrong with Allen Alley?

Jack, you can pull this if you think it's out of line or too far off-topic.

If the Repubs had nominated Alley, then we'd have a real choice and a real, substantive alternative to Kitzhaber. Dud's a nice guy, but totally out of his league. I suppose I should be grateful they at least didn't put up a Tea Party nutter . . .

Roger, this Republican wishes Alley had won. I can only assume that GOP primary voters were so enamored of Dudley's star status that they (39 percent of them, anyway) sent their votes his way. For me, Dudley's main selling point is that he's not Kitzhaber.

Why would any critic of Kitzhabers think Dudley would be an equal disaster?

Kizhaber will support and sustain everything ever criticized here.
At the Port, TriMet, Metro, CoP, State Board of Ed, ODOT on and on and on.

He might as well be Sam Adams.

Granted the speculative concerns some have with Dudley, but proportianate to the certainty of Kitzhaber's allegiance to the status quo I can't imagine a scenario where Governor Dudley is anything but an enormously better risk.

What is it being imagined that a Dudley administration may do that causes Kitzhaber opponents to imagine there is no difference?

Dudley could hire Sarah Palin as his chief of staff. The American way, carried to it's ultimate absurdity.

Kitzhaber? It may not be obvious but things aren't working in Oregon. If you're among the affluent, the elites, certain special catagories (eg.bicyclists) things may seem to be working but we're headed downhill. Kitzhaber is incapable of changing government for the better.

Dudley could hire Dick Cheney too.
But aren't we talking abour Oregon and reality?

There is no scenario where Dudley does more harm than Kitzhaber's certain preservation of the status quo.

It's equaly certain that Dudley would bring on talented people similar to Allen Alley (if not him) and many other reliable people who recognize the many things NOT working and that cannot continue.

I can't see how Kitzhaber has any more than the diehard 35% support.

He'll be like a 5th term of the same governor.

Anyone know why Kitzhaber is listed as a Democrat and an Independent in the voter's pamphlet? I thought you had to pick one.

I am with Ben. How could we ever elect another hack like Kitzhaber? If Kitzhaber wins it means that Oregon has been taken over by Californians and their crazy politics. I mean really, it looks like Brown is going to win in California. The left coast is becoming a loony tune morass of bhagwan shree rashneesh believers. Yeah, go ahead and vote for Kitzhaber but you better wear orange for the next four years.

Jack -

When you look at the Schrader Brunn thing, remember that a big swath of SW Portland is in that district. One doesn't just have to live in Salem to have a vote in that race.

And mine does not go to Schrader. I am fed up with De pols who have adopted being office holders as a way of life and lifetime job. That includes Martha Schrader, running for re election to the Marion County Board of Commissioners at the same time hubby Kurt is running for re election to the US House. Far too many parts of the US are looking like North Korea, where they keep it all in the family. Kennedys; Dodds; Bays; Clintons; Bushs' Udalls; Browns; Fish;s, Johnsons (Betsy and her parents, not Lyndon); MacPhersons; Naitos, Kafourys, ad nauseum.

Enough with the self selected families of nobility. Off with their heads.

And why so many of them Democrats?

Jon -

Because Independents area party and he wsa nominated in their convention, just as he won the Dem primary. You are confusing "Independent" which is a party with "unaffiliated voter", which is the technical and legal description for what most of us in everyday conversation call an unaffilliated voter - independent.

Much mischief is possible with the willingness of Kate Brown and her predecessor to recognize a party labeling itself as the "Independent Party".

That includes Martha Schrader, running for re election to the Marion County Board of Commissioners at the same time hubby Kurt is running for re election to the US House.

I think that's Clackamas County, not Marion...

Poot -

Thanks for the correction, it is Clackamas County.

My point about everybody in the family being in elected office, and making the best part of their income from a government legislative check still stands

Kitzhaber is a dispiriting choice,but at least he has an understanding of what it takes to be governor. Dudley's inexperience and the arrogance he must have to even assume he could start at the top makes him a potential disaster. Unless somehow Jack Roberts is the power behind the throne and will be the guy who really runs the state. I could live with that, but I have no idea if that's even a remote possibility.

Gil: You mean inexperience and arrogance like Obama a one term Senator running for President.

Obama was a state senator for eight years, then served four years in the US Senate. That's 12 years of total elective government experience -- probably about average as presidential candidates go.

"If I lived in Salem, I'd vote for Schrader."

Nope. For me, his vote on Obamacare killed any shot he had at winning this "non afilliated" voter's vote. I'll take my chances with Bruun than live with another pelosi dem bot veterinarian trying to run my healthcare.

Dudley may end up a dud but Kitz is already there. Wyden is out for a host of reasons, number one being healthcare again.

Nonny Mouse is wrong re Independent Party.

Kitzhaber was not "nominated in their convention." The Independent Party did not have a convention. It selected its nominees by means of a full online primary election in July 2010. See http://indparty.com. Kitzhaber won the nomination by getting the most votes from Independent Party members.

Nonny also says, "Much mischief is possible with the willingness of Kate Brown and her predecessor to recognize a party labeling itself as the `Independent Party'." She identifies no mischief, and under Oregon law the Secretary of State (actually Bill Bradbury at the time) had no choice but to recognize the Independent Party, which was created by voter signatures on petitions circulated in 2006. Several other states have an "Independent Party," including Delaware, Hawaii, New Mexico, and others.

One thing I don't understand about the governor's race, and I'm hoping the Republicans who hang here can illuminate me: What was so wrong with Allen Alley?

The Republican line (and I believe it) is that Dudley was pushed exactly because he would present a weaker opponent to Kitzhaber.

I have never been a member of either party, and I voted for Kitzhaber and other Democrats (even, shudder, Barbara Roberts) but the Democrat Party and public-employee union lock on state government has destroyed my home state.

There are only two choices, Jack. Pick one.

What was so wrong with Allen Alley?

Nothing a million dollars wouldn't have cured.

I saw both of them on the stump during the primary run up and attended one debate. I thought that Alley was a better candidate, but the (paid) political consultants began circulating the meme that went something like this:

With his fundraising advantage and name recognition, Dudley will fare better in the People's Republic Multnomah County. Dudley's a popular athlete while businessmen (like Alley) are generally frowned upon.

I heard this meme enough to know that it was catching on, then the Oregonian endorsement sealed the deal (and I suspect that the Dudley primary endorsement was motivated to make it easier to defend their eventual support of Kitzhaber in the general).

I voted for Alley in the primary, but I still think Dudley is a far better than Kitzhaber. I'm not saying this as a party line guy (I voted for Tom Cox over Kevin Mannix back in the day).

Having lived through 16 years of Kitzlongoski, I can't afford to wait for a perfect candidate to emerge.

Kevin Mannix - another reminder of why I *hate* the OR repugnicant party

Ralph Kramden: You mean inexperience and arrogance like Obama a one term Senator running for President.

This is such a tired line. Obama had served as an elected legislator since 1997. He also taught Constitutional Law at the University of Chicago School of Law for over a decade. That's a great pre-req for a job to "preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States." If the Tea Bagger folks *actually cared* about the Constitution beyond the 2-3 little sections they obsess about, you'd think they'd appreciate this type of experience.

Bojack: Metro president: Tom Hughes. Give business at least a glimmer of hope. The other guy is just a condo developer pal wrapped up in a green flag.

Tom Hughes has been a lobbyist for developers. You know that, right? I think his campaign has been funded, to the tune of around $100,000, by developers. You can look it up on ORESTAR.

Additionally, Ralph, Obama (unlike Dudley) was vetted by a lengthy campaign. Unlike Dudley, Obama held numerous press conferences, publicly answered voter questions, spoke at length about his views, participated in numerous debates and public forums.

Dudley hasn't. His team doesn't seem to have much confidence in his abilities to handle himself in a public forum.


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