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

government | legacies

What do you think of the job Tom Potter is doing? Should he run again?

Following last weeks cover story "Midterm Malaise" about Potter's recent political defeats and plans to make a showing before he runs for a second term, the Portland Tribune printed a small item in the current issue stating that sources close to Potter say he won't run.

Just curious what the IM community thinks of Potter? Success or Failure?
Here's how I see it:

SUCCESS:

> Opted out of Joint Terrorism Task Force after Feds refused to disclose information to Potter as required by law.

> Saved Portland from Francesconi.


FAILURES:

> Has defended the Portland Development Commission from increased public oversight, eventually losing to the Sten-Leonard-Adams coalition.

> Campaigned touting Chief Foxworth and supported him to the bloody end, despite evidence that Potter may well have known about Foxworth's history of sexual harassment. Now Capt. Foxworth is a lame duck cop doing low-profile community activities so he can collect his share of the sweet Police-Fireman retirement package. Potter should have fired him flat out.

> Despite coming in as a former Police Chief and campaigning on police reform, Potter has failed miserably in changing the almost criminally negligent investigations cops go through, even if they wrongly kill a young girl or boy. His plans to "change the culture" of the police and implement new training guidelines seem to have been completely forgotten.

> When it all came down the line, he ultimately sided with OHSU on the rediculous aerial tram.

> His hand-selected team to review and suggest revisions of the City Charter ended up looking like a Who's Who of the entrenched Portland elites.

> His visioning process gets more lip service than immediate issues and still has no defined milestones and objectives.

> The idea to amend the city charter to allow a city income tax to fund schools fell (rightfully) flat on its face.



The criticism thrown at Potter by the Mercury in its endorsement of Francesconi has proven to be valid as Potter's term in office has reflected his campaign--feel good rhetoric about community involvement and vision and leadership, but little tactical mastery of the political process. The first 18 months of his term, he basically coasted on visions and public relations, but by not tackling problems head on he has seen the crows come home to roost and seems incapable of saving any significant harvest.

Recommended listening for Tom Potter: Elvis Presley "A Little Less Talk A Little More Action"
Loclomg the FBI's Butt 26.Jul.2006 10:06

--

Kicking the FBI's butt (twice--once when he ditched the terrorist task force and once when he outed the FBI trying to recruit a city mole) is a pretty big deal. I live outside the city so I can't vote, but let's be sure we don't end up with someone weaker. Having a Potter in office was a long time coming. Katz was my first Portland exoperience--eck!

Thumbs up! 26.Jul.2006 14:24

ranger

Certainly not perfect, but there are hardly any decent choices out there. I prefer Potter than the alternatives. Vera - yes, yuck. Now, if someone can do something with those lame ass parking meters that don't work half the time.