portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article questions portland metro

government oregon elections 2004

Washington County Leftists

Washington County Leftists need to share information
I now live in Washington County and am finding it difficult to vote this year. All the candidates seem to say, "I've lived a long time in Hillsboro and want more money for police and fire. Oh, and we need more jobs." It's impossible to make decisions based on this stuff.

Any other leftists out here? What can we do to share information (especially so we don't vote for quiet conservatives)? To contact me via email, reply to the craigslist post and I'll get it.

homepage: homepage: http://forums.portland.craigslist.org/login/?act=Q&ID=20528588

How I Ended Up Voting 26.Oct.2004 03:14

WashCoLefty

It wasn't easy, but click the link below where I detailed my votes on my blog.


We are here, but you have to look for us! 26.Oct.2004 07:01

StevetheGreen

I have been an organizer in Washington county for the last 5 years.
We have a group that meets regularly called "The Washington county citizens for Progressive government".

Among other things, this group formed the PAC "Washington county citizens for electricity cost savings" to try and create a "peoples utility district" in Washington county. This group runs the gammet of "left" philosophy. We have Greens, socialists, independents, and even a few reluctant Democrats. We have made a difference in this community in a variety of ways and in my opinion are an example of a small affinity group that can effectively create change on the local level.

But make no mistake about it, together with the "Anybody but Bush" logic and the demographics of the county itself (largely middle to upper middle class working tech industry people), it has been extremely difficult to grow our group. But we have a core of about 7 or 8 people who have always remained.

While we all have different ideas on how to best go about creating lasting change, we all strive for social justice, peace, and a responsible environmental approach.

If you or anyone else is interested in getting involved with this group, you can contact me through my website "VoteGreenVoteGeiger.com".

I am currently running for Oregon state Representative in district 28 (Beaverton/Aloha) as a Pacific Green party candidate. I am also running for a PUD board director seat and am one of the chief petitione's for the formation of a PUD in Washington county.

I look forward to meeting with anyone out beyond the "Washington county Wall" who doesn't think activism should stop at the suburbs.

Peace!
Steve Geiger

have you tried a Google search for each candidate? 26.Oct.2004 13:14

CaptainPlanet

You can usually find plenty of info on anyone with a highly public life, just by Internet searching. For example, searching on "Goli Ameri" it didn't take me long to find:

- she is founder and president of eTinium, a consulting and research firm specializing in telecommunications
- she is running for US Congress, Oregon's First Congressional District
- she characterizes herself as an Iranian "refugee", though she was already living in the US and attending Stanford for years before the 1978-79 revolution, her family is a wealthy royal family, and she has visited Iran on a number of occasions since
- most of the local Iranian population DOES NOT support her
- she supports taking away the right of juries to decide a punishment in the case of liability lawsuits
- supports reduction in corporate tax rates (some corporations, such as PGE/Enron, have managed to pay as little as $10 for a year of taxes)
- she supports "proper interpretation" of the Endangered Species Act, "which has been used to subject private property owners to much hardship." (wouldn't want to enforce the democratically passed law or protect any of those nasty species, would we?)

This is just for starters. You shouldn't need anyone to interpret the candidates for you. Why not do some research and post your results to PDX IMC?

What we need: A local version of "Votesmart" 26.Oct.2004 23:48

sum 1

There's still a lot of offices that it's hard to get info on the candidates for. Take the judicial offices, for example. Or even the State Senate and Representative candidates. For example, if I live in District 21 of the State Senate, should I vote for Kate Brown? What has she done? I read the ballot where she said she had worked to improve access to healthcare for all. That sounds nice. So I voted for her. I wouldn't call it a well informed vote though. I don't feel good about it.

I looked at the judgeships, and I couldn't figure out what to do. Who the hell is Darleen Ortega? She's running for Position 3 on the Court of Appeals. That's all I know. I didn't vote for her. (She's running unopposed, so maybe it makes no difference.) I voted for Alicia A. Fuchs for Judge of the Circuit Court, 4th District, Position 15, because I read in her statement for the voters pamphlet that she had experience as a public defender. I figured that might make her less likely to be a totally fascist tool of the prosecutors. But who knows? A lot of these so-called public defenders are worthless. They don't call 'em "puppet defenders" for nothing.

What we really need is a progressive organization that can act as a watchdog on these many different local races and less high profile offices, and submit surveys to these people. If they are judges, the surveys should include questions relating to the justice system, attitudes towards civil liberties, etc. If they are in the state house, they should relate to current issues of concern there, etc. If a progressive organization could be informed with enough clout that had enough membership, say a coalition of progressive organizations and newspapers, like the Portland Alliance, Indymedia, League of Conservation Voters, KBOO, etc, the candidates would feel compelled to answer such surveys or risk alienating a potentially important voting bloc. The "voters bloc" as an organization wouldn't necessarily have to even endorse candidates, just present the results of its surveys and let readers make their own judgments. Basically, this could like a localized version of Project Votesmart

Real Data for Voters 27.Oct.2004 07:06

WashCoLefty

Well, I did do the Google search thing to supplement the Voter's Pamphlet but didn't get very much when I got down to the city races. Actually, I got almost nothing beyond the Hillsboro Argus' right-of-conservative endorsements. Sadly, I found that even WillyWeek was endorsing the Republican for my State House district! He who was arrested for drunk driving in Washington AND who WillyWeek rated as the worst legislator in the Metro area during the last term. I mean, come on. WillyWeek supports him because his opponent "isn't ready for prime time?" I also looked at things like Basic Rights Oregon, Pacific Greens, etc endorsements.

But I agree, something like VoteSmart would be a help. I don't know how detailed it should be, but mostly I want to be able to weed out the closet OCA'ers and Christian Coalition folks. For example, reading the stuff, including pages on Google, about Betsy Close (Secretary of State) it didn't talk about how right wing she really is. I knew this because I remembered some of her bills from years past -- one was to put the Ten Commandments in every Oregon classroom. I'm also thinking she did some sort of Creation Theory Education bill.

Anyway, considering we are talking about Washington County and there are only a handful of Lefty's anyway, it would need to be concise, about the issues, and cross the spectrum. Heck, if Libertarians could find it useful, so be it! But mostly I would like to see it for the local candidates because unless you are involved with the Hillsboro City Council, I can guarantee you hear nothing about them (except maybe in the Argus). I really wanted to know who WASN'T going to continue with Big Box development, building of Civic and Aquatic Centers when there is no money for schools, and how they stood on Wal-Mart. But this was not information I could find.

And alas, I don't think I have enough interest or energy to read the Argus that consistently to keep up with this sort of stuff. And it's not like they are biased to the right or anything...no sirree, not the Argus.

Well, off to VoteGreenVoteGeiger.com to make further contact with Steve the Green (who got my vote for the PUD)!