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Still undecided? Join us for a ‘Mayoral Inquisition’ next week

Posted by on September 10th, 2012 at 1:26 pm

Event poster detail. See full version below.

The Portland Mercury is putting on what should be a fun and informative Portland mayoral candidate debate next week. It’s their “Mayoral Inquisition!” — an even that, according to Mercury reporter Sarah Mirk, will look to, “get away from the stiff, soundbite-inducing structure of a formal debate and instead have a public forum that’s more conversational.”

Mirk and Mercury News Editor Denis Theriault will be the chief inquisitors and they’ll be joined by three members of the public: Public Defender Chris O’Connor, Social Services Advocate (and former City Council candidate) Karol Collymore, and yours truly.

This campaign has been tough to follow recently as personal ethics — not the big issues our city faces — have dominated the headlines. The Oregonian columnist Steve Duin had a good recap of the recent troubles of both Jefferson Smith and Charlie Hales in his piece yesterday, Can either candidate for Portland mayor be trusted?.

Given recent missteps and other factors, I have a hunch many Portlanders are still undecided about this race. Hopefully this Mayoral Inquisition will help clear the waters. (For more background on Hales and Smith, browse our past coverage.)

Join us at Rontoms (600 E Burnside) at 8:00 pm next Tuesday the 18th. More info here and check the full poster below…

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you — Jonathan

  • Hart Noecker September 10, 2012 at 1:36 pm

    Anybody undecided at this point should know that Jefferson Smith is opposed to the CRC and coal exports running through Portland, and has received the endorsements of the Sierra Club, the Oregon League of Conservation Voters, Bike.Walk.Vote, and countless unions. Conversely, Charlie Hales and his campaign have taken over ten grand in pro-coal corporate money, he supports the CRC, and recently was revealed to have illegally recorded an interview conducted with the OLCV.

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  • Ethan September 10, 2012 at 3:57 pm

    Honestly, the driving record revelations were a disappointment, but the recent contribution limit workarounds more than evened the scales . . . I very specifically don’t want another mayor beholden to traditional developers, whose tax abatements and expensive rail corridors backrupt the city. Besides, both of their driving records in recent years are basically identical (below average). Judging from your tweets at the time, you were disappointed too.

    FWIW, I saw Hales tweet the OLCV endorsement before it was publicly announced, I’m guessing that was also a violation of a confidentiality agreement, recording or no.

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  • Granpa September 10, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    Smith’s driving record bugs me too. There is no social contract that is easier to keep than to drive within the law. Smith completely disregarded the laws and was oblivious to possible consequences. Being mayor would be a much more difficult social contract to maintain.

    I guess Bud Clark is out of the picture…………sigh

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    • dan September 11, 2012 at 9:21 am

      Yeah! Couldn’t we get Bud Clark to come back, or maybe Vera? Hell, at this point, I’d be happy to see Sho Dozono toss his hat in the ring, though I suppose it’s too late for that now.

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  • Aaron September 10, 2012 at 5:01 pm

    Can we start this mayoral race all over. Neither of these guys are appealing to me.

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  • dwainedibbly September 10, 2012 at 5:46 pm

    We have all learned by now that there are no perfect heroes, right? Just human beings.

    If Smith really can stop the CRC he’ll probably get my vote. (Honestly, he probably will anyway.) The real question is: Does the Mayor of Portland have enough influence that he can stop the CRC? I’m skeptical.

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  • Hart Noecker September 10, 2012 at 9:55 pm

    I think what Jefferson can do is help promote the CSA (common sense alternatives)

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    • peejay September 11, 2012 at 9:45 am

      I think you’re onto something here. Something’s getting built across the Columbia, and if we get in the game early and redirect the momentum towards a project that makes more sense for all of us, I think we gain some allies from the pro-CRC coalition. If Jefferson can manage that politics of that, it would be a huge benefit.

      On the driving issue: all around the country, you hear people who just don’t understand what they’re doing when they choose to drive fast, or otherwise take the obligations of a driver’s license lightly. It’s our culture, unfortunately, and we have a lot to do to change it. I changed: I was one of those who took chances, thought myself above the law, accumulated points and insurance hikes. I stopped, and now I have the luxury of looking at my old driving behavior with revulsion. But, but, we have to accept that, culturally, Americans have not chosen to accept the moral implications of bad driving. Just read the news lately, for examples of people accepting death and injury as an inevitable part of driving.

      I want to hold my mayoral candidate accountable for this, but right now, it’s kind of like going back to the civil rights era of the 60’s, and choosing candidates based on whether they supported gay marriage. I hope we don’t have to wait fifty years for people to wake up, but it’s going to take some time.

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  • voline September 11, 2012 at 12:54 am

    Is it too late for Sam Adams to get into the race?

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