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Friday, October 19, 2012

Charlotte throws a Hail Mary

Her re-election bid is doomed if she talks about the issues, and so Clackamas County chair Charlotte Lehan has decided to go deeply, personally negative on her opponent, John Ludlow. Lehan's supporters, flush with cash from the Portland "planning" mafia, have started up a well organized hit campaign, to the effect that Ludlow is a bully. This includes lawn signs, some of which they've got up on the public right-of-way on Terwilliger Boulevard in Portland, which isn't even in Clackistan.

Lehan's in trouble because her rogue behavior on "urban renewal" and light rail issues -- clearly disregarding the sentiment of the majority of the county's voters -- has drawn the ire of many voters. That she's going to make highly personal attacks on her opponent shows her own awareness that her re-election is in serious jeopardy.

Perhaps the saddest part of the latest developments is the participation in the character assassination by Carla Axtman, an increasingly shrill voice on the Blue Oregon blog. For most of this year, Axtman has been selling the foolhardy Wood Village casino proposal, and pushing Jefferson Smith for Portland mayor. Now that Smith's violent ways have wrecked his chances for future public office, Axtman's got time to lead the chant that Ludlow is a bully. Well, she oughta know.

Oregonians aren't real keen on the personal attack. When PGE tried that on Lloyd Marbet a few decades ago, the voters responded by forcing the closure of the Trojan nuclear power plant. Lehan's in a deep hole, and spending the Goldschmidt people's money going personally negative is just digging it deeper. She ought to be thinking more carefully about her political future. Who's advising her -- Axtman? Given what's happened to the casino and Smith, that may not be money well spent.

Comments (26)

Carla Axtman is the Typhoid Mary of Oregon politics.

I've seen those signs popping up also and at least one is at the east end of the Sellwood Bridge. I noticed that it was the same size and layout as the "Like Traffic?" signs a while back in the same locations.

That she's going to make highly personal attacks on her opponent shows her own awareness that her re-election is in serious jeopardy.

It also reveals the true nature of one's character.

Is this the same Carla Axtman who uses the word "douchebag" like it was the only word left in the dictionary?

Not trying to start a flame war, but really, how is what they're doing different than chatting up 20 year old info on "nutsy?"

I don't really see how pointing out Ludlow's faults (bankruptcy, tax issues, short history as Wilsonville mayor) is anything but politics as usual. (Also known as... not beanbag.)

One only seems to have a problem with it when "our" candidate is on the receiving end. People who choose to run for office have made the choice to open themselves up to attack. They could just as easily choose to remain private citizens.

In a perfect world, we would all rationally discuss the issues in quiet voices and come to mutually beneficial decisions. Until then...

Newly transitioned to Clackamas County from dark blue Multnomah County, being able to have voted against Light Rail funding, I am so looking forward voting for John Ludlow and Tootie Smith. This is the first time in a long time that I believe my vote is going to make a differance.

"have started up a well organized hit campaign, to the effect that Ludlow is a bully"

Hell, Ludlow oughta run for Bluemanure's or Randy Leonard's seat if those are his qualifications.

You have this one wrong Jack. This campaign is being ran by one person, it's not like the Oregon Transformation Project which is running the Ludlow campaign.

So I guess you don't know Jack, Jack.

Lots of signs in far SW Portland because Clackamas commuters drive through there. Same reason why earlier signs urged people to vote against the "Screw Portland" measures that ultimately axed contribution to replace ClackCo commuter's favorite crumbling bridge.

Look at how the media has treated Lehan versus Ludlow. In the O's recent feel-good piece on Lehan, there was not one descriptive, adjective, negative word attributed to her, even from people who have had to deal with her. Compare that to the articles that have been written about John Ludlow. They have boiled it down to "bully". Thank God we have an election.

There are several words for Ludlow in addition to "Bully". He is running as a populist, but he's what ever you want him to be. On April 9, 2011 at a Sttaford Hamlet Meeting Mr. Ludlow was there to represent some party who owns property on Borland Road.

At that meeting he stated "Some people say farm land is to farm, not an investment to build on. Well are table is here to say we are investors and we want the higher density."

Less than a year later he is against higher density. Or is he just saying he's against higher density so he can be elected, and then who knows what he will do.

Ludlow is a say anything candidate, and I can't trust anybody like him. It would help to know that one of his supporters have already received more than $3 Million Dollars from the Milwaukie Light Rail Expansion.

So the press is choosing to write nothing about Ludlow, because frankly- Ludlow is a no go.

" ... Carla Axtman, an increasingly shrill voice on the Blue Oregon blog ...."

A couple of years ago a campaign in Southern Oregon was being grossly unfairly depicted on BlueOregon. In that this was my backyard, I posted countervailing information at the site. Which was not particularly if at all welcome, as you might imagine. BlueOregon entertains precious little diversity of thought -- or even information.

The main writer of the pieces on the candidate I was interested to tell the truth about was at least a bit reasonable. But I still remember Axtman. She was like a cross between a pitbull, a barracuda and a scorpion. And very personal and at least that relentless in her attacks. She's ferocious.

Ludlow has no bully behavior in his past or present at all.
So this is very typical for Carla to run with and embellish a contrived personal attack.
That's what she does.

The sleaziness of the guy, the bully campaign and all
those who are trying to pump it up is all they have.

Blue Oregon is a greek chorus of uber-progressive thought. They pretty much eliminated any posting of contrary opinion and now just "bleet, bleet, bleet" to one another like a bunch of sheep.

And Axtman? Who cares. She is insignificant. The only people who pay any attention to her are those Blue Oregon sheep.

The same guy behind the Ludlow is a Bully Campaign also put up the "Like Traffic" signs. He has put up lot of signs for both campaigns where he shouldn't and in fact ODOT removed those placed in public right of way. See this story:


He is part of the Pro Light Rail Mafia and thus has a vested interest in keeping Ludlow out of office.


In 1994 before the West Linn Wilsonville School Board Meeting Mr. Ludlow went before the board to make public complaints against Board Member Walter Van Eck.

None of the complaints Mr. Ludlow brought up had anything to do with the school board activity, he just wanted to attack Mr. Van Eck in public. All I ever heard from anybody was that Mr. Ludlow is always like this.

If you want a shill to attack somebody (provided you pay him) Ludlow is your man. Mr. Ludlow has lobbied to keep certain companies out of Wilsonville, because they wouldn't play with him. So he takes his ball and goes home.

So Ludlow even admits he didn't pay his taxes so he could put his kids through college, and then claims bankruptcy (source Oregonian May 3rd,2012) to eliminate the debt. There by his kids got a free college education.

Ludlow and his pals are all for government handouts, provided they benefit him. Ludlow just can't be trusted.

Johnny, Steve O and Baloney are all the same person.

But I still remember Axtman. She was like a cross between a pitbull, a barracuda and a scorpion. And very personal and at least that relentless in her attacks. She's ferocious.

Nope - just a BO blowhard.

Robert Collins says, "Blue Oregon is a greek chorus of uber-progressive thought." As a representative of the Oregon Progressive Party, I deny that. BO is a greek chorus of Democratic Party establishment thought, which is often not progressive.

Johnny, Steve O and Baloney are all the same person.

It's somebody out in Hillsboro. And his or her IP address, a static Comcast business account, appears to have a connection with a company called Hinds Instruments in Hillsboro.

The sign placement around the county that John Ludlow is a bully is outrageous. So was the comment made about John trying to get out of a speeding ticket in Washington. Tell me, who doesn't try to get out of a ticket? What we are interested in is that the person elected does a great job, better than the person before him or her. John Ludlow is honest, forthcoming, and fights for what he believes in. He is his own man.
As to the Lehan people who are using signs and personal attacks, I wonder when those running for office will understand that the public does not like verbal or written attacks or dirty politics. Throwing mud at an opponent works in reverse.
We all want change and John Ludlow is the man to do it as the Chair, Clackamas County Commissioner, Position l.

Charlotte...I'm really surprised that you took the "low road" during this campaign. I've supported and voted for you in the past but you lost me with this bullying BS...enjoy retirement.

Steve O
Your long string of lies are typical of BlueOregon and are as dishonest as Lehan's entire campaign.
Ludlow has never been a Bully & never advocated for the "higher density" you are deceitfully suggesting.
His so called "advocacy in representing some party who owns property on Borland Road" was nothing like what you claim at all.
There's a huge difference between developing something and the Metro/Portland Creep density which Lehan, Damon and Metro are trying to force onto every community. Ludlow never supported or advocated for METRO's level of high density.At "that meeting" he merely pointed out that sewer and water won't likely come without 5-6 units per acre unless property owners or buyers are willing to pay for the additional costs.That is not the forced density he has always opposed.
Your disgusting attempt to cast Ludlow as lying about his opposition to Metro's unwanted density is a big FAIL.
So no John Ludlow is NOT "saying he's against higher density so he can be elected".
Ludlow is NOT the say anything candidate at all and is entirely trustworthy.
Ludlow has no supporter who got millions from Milwaukie Light Rail. You're lying. Demonstrated by the lack of any name to go with your claim.
Yet you don't name that supporter because you are a hack and there no such supporter.
Your ridiculous and dishonest assertions are the same cheap things thrown at anyone challenging the light rail/planning thug club of which Lehan and Damon are hard core members.
What businesses did Ludlow lobby against? No name there either? Ludlow did oppose the SoloPower Urban Renewal sham and led the effort to stop the city's hand out. Good for John.
Your School Board Member Walter Van Eck tale is equally despicable. That guy was a complete whack job who had a recall filed, faced over a $million in federal tax liens and literally left town in the middle of night never to be heard from again. Good for John again.

Of course the dishonest Lehan and friends have always tied to paint Mr. Ludlow as you are.

When her despicable behavior and false charges finally ended up in court Lehan and the city lost with the Judge harshly criticizing Lehan's attempt.

The judge ruled in Ludlow's favor, awarding him $30K, required the city re-instate him to the planning commission and made the city apologize in a public meeting.

The judge went on to admire and compliment John Ludlow for his principals. Again, good for John.

Ludlow never took on any college debt or had any of it eliminated through bankruptcy. His kids never got a free college education, he paid his taxes and re-built his credit to the high level enjoys today. He is an admirably man you are trying to disparage.

Ludlow and "his pals" never got the "government handouts" you claim but he is all in favor the many safety net programs that help the genuinely needy.

His Volunteer of the Year awards further demonstrate his benevolent kindness. Good for John.

In stark contrast, anti-public Lehan and Damon are playing on the "regional racket" team, pushing the crony capitalist planning agenda where it is not wanted and screwing the public every chance they get.

If voters vote based upon the truth Lehan and Damon will get what they deserve. Thrown out of office.

Yeah, tough choice.

Someone who regularly violates the public trust with her policies and actions and spends millions on projects (some of which aren't even in the county), or a guy who 20 years ago yelled at some people and wants a public vote before spending that much money.

Boy, I'm going to need more time on this one.

Ludlow has nothing to worry about, bully signs or not.


Dan Meek,

Point taken and correction accepted. Dem party establishment is more accurate. Thaks for pointing it out.

For the record, over at BlueOregon, anyone is welcome to comment - we don't censor comments. We're often graced by conservatives like John Charles, Julie Parrish, Jack Roberts, Rob Kremer, and many others.

We also welcome guest columns. As long as it's original, well-written, about Oregon, about politics, policy, or social criticism, and it's not right-wing nonsense, we'll probably publish it.

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