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So You Say You Wanna Recall, Sam?

It only takes 32,183 valid signatures from Portland registered voters to set up a recall election for the current Mayor.
Election Redux?
Election Redux?
The rules below apply as to any recall for an elected official in Portland.
And it only takes 32,183 valid signatures from Portland registered voters to set up a recall election.

Sam Adams should welcome a recall election, one in which we all now know a lot more about the Mayor's judgement. If he wins again, fine.

Let the people have their say!


A City elected official is not subject to recall during the first six months of the current term. This means that Mayor Adams is not subject to recall until 7/1/2009.

A prospective petition to recall Mayor Adams may be submitted to the City Elections Officer by a Portland registered voter beginning 7/1/2009. The filing form includes the "reasons for demanding recall" in 200 words or less.

After the City Elections Officer approves signature sheets, the chief petitioner has 90 calendar days from the prospective petition filing date to collect at least 32,183 valid signatures from Portland registered voters.* Please note that the chief petitioner must also establish a Statement of Organization for Chief Petitioner Committee before signature sheets will be approved for circulation.

* 32,183 is 15% of the total votes cast for governor in the City of Portland in the last gubernatorial election, November 2006.

After the signatures are submitted, the City Elections Officer has 10 days to certify the results. If, after verification, at least 32,183 signatures are determined to be valid, there is a five-day resignation period. During this period, the elected official that is the subject of the recall petition may either: (a) resign; or (b) submit a "statement of justification of the public officer's course in office" in 200 words or less.

If the official does not resign, a recall election is held no later than 35 days after the end of the five-day resignation period.


The recall ballot contains:

1. The statement of reasons for demanding recall, as submitted by the petitioner in the prospective petition;

2. The statement of justification as submitted by the elected official; and

3. A Question: "Shall ______ be recalled from the office of _______."

- "Yes, I vote for the recall of _______." OR

- "No, I vote against the recall of _______."

If the recall election is successful, a vacancy in office occurs immediately after the City Elections Officer receives the official abstract of votes from Multnomah County Elections. The County has 20 days by statute to deliver the abstract, and they usually require the entire 20 days.

Recall procedures for City of Portland elected officials are determined by state statute and rules. The guiding manual is the 2008 Recall Manual published by the Oregon Secretary of State, available on the City Elections website:  http://www.portlandonline.com/auditor/index.cfm?&c=27131.

The above information was provided from a Management Analyst in the Office of the City Auditor, City of Portland.

Ha. 27.Jan.2009 07:37

The people have spoken.

The people already HAVE had their say. And they say they want Sam Adams as the mayor.

Narrow business interests (who just happen to own the corporate media) don't like it, but tough shit.

I'm skeptical that "septic skeptic" is anything but a corporate shill, trying to invade one of the only venues for true independent media in the city.

So keep trying, but tough shit. We support Sam. We don't care who he slept with. It was legal, it was consensual, and it was not a scandal. We're not as gullible as you think we are.

Uh, No 27.Jan.2009 08:05

try again

No one here said they wanna recall Sam Adams.

We're happy with the democratically elected mayor that we put into office. We're not interested in letting a PBA-sponsored smear campaign make up our minds for us. You've already tried that. Repeatedly. It didn't work. Remember?

Are you surprised that your "scandal-that-wasn't" is backfiring in your face, corporate media?

Me too. It worked when you sent us spiraling into war over "weapons of mass destruction" and "mushroom clouds," didn't it? It worked all those other times you've smeared people and blamed victims and laid out creepy corporate agendas. I guess you cried wolf once too often, eh? Well for whatever reason, people are thinking for themselves and you can't stop that.

Septic ..... Appropiate Word Choice 27.Jan.2009 08:38

Den Mark, Vancouver

"Septic" means rotten, poisoned, toxic. How very appropriate. Antidote for that kind of sepsis is the antibiotic of truth, spread generously by us medics, who oppose current diseased attack on the mayor.

NO 27.Jan.2009 10:19


I don't believe that's the overall sentiment being expressed here at all.

Try some religious fascist site. You might find lots of little anal retentive play buddies there.

I oppose the recall effort, but..... 27.Jan.2009 11:13


While I do not support a recall of our mayor because of lies to questions that should of never been asked, I do think that if this was a hetero mayor whose politics were left of center, the PDX indymedia crowd would be roasting him alive. That is the definition of hypocrisy.

If Sam would of originally answered concerns by saying "my personal sex life is none of your business", I would of supported him. But he chose not only to offer direct denials to something he should of said was none of your business, but he also attacked those who brought the allegations as liars. They may have been scumbags, but on that issue, they were not liars and Sam's actions should not be ignored simply because the questions were inappropriate. He made the decision about how to handle the questions and the truth is he made a mistake. That's not anybody's fault but Sam.

It also appears that he may have tried to silence reports about his sex life by offering a cushy job to the Portland Mercury reporter, although I will concede that I don't know that is the case. But it sure looks that way.

But this analysis would not be complete unless it included the fact that the corporate media has taken this opportunity to run a biased smear campaign whose intent is to force the mayor to resign or to invigorate a recall effort. As is usually the case, our local papers here in Portland have handled this even worse than Sam did.

Bottom line:
For me, consistancy in my approach to these things is important.
Just because Sam is an openly gay mayor that I support, does not give him a free pass to handle this episode in the way he chose to handle it. Corruption and abuse of power by our elected officials is something that should be opposed by everyone all the time, not just when it happens to your political opponents or those who you do not support.

Now go ahead and roast me as some kind of kneejerk simply because I refuse to be hypocritical.

Roasting Pan Is Ready! 27.Jan.2009 11:39

Den Mark, Vancouver

So a person is defined by every single incident in his or her life? (God/Goddess help me, then, for i am not perfect.) This is what appears to be the case, as the current self-righteous stand by some people who should know better, is based on one incident, that, even if terrible, which it isn't, is not enuf, to me, to define the entire Sam Adams. What riles me from afar about this bizarre tension in Portland is that those who "support" Adams but cannot abide this incident, totally miss the context in which it occurred, & is occurring. Who benefits from this skewering. I say, the very ones who oppose Adams exactly for his sexual orientation. Light the roasting fire! SOMEBODY MUST BE COOKED, ..... apparently. Sad.

(For my part, what angers me about Sam Adams, & the rest of Portland's "leaders", is their failure to condemn murders by Portland cops. Hmmm. Maybe sex is more serious than murder.)

oh please 27.Jan.2009 22:48

just go away already

> I do think that if this was a hetero mayor whose politics were left of center, the PDX
> indymedia crowd would be roasting him alive. That is the definition of hypocrisy.

no, that's the definition of "making shit up"

"septic," you know, like in the butt 28.Jan.2009 01:33

i that really all this is about

> "Septic" means rotten, poisoned, toxic.

I didn't notice before, but now I think it's just a scat reference. It's more homophobia. Whoever is running this campaign is either motivated by homophobia, or they're so alienated from the progressive world, they think it's cool to casually throw around homophobic language to "build support."

To activists with misplaced anger 28.Jan.2009 13:23

tom potter

I object whole heartily to the use of indymedia as a mouthpiece for
the faction of a corrupt and embattled mayor. Sam Adams is an
operator, and has been planning his ascendancy to the mayor's office for
decades. He was ruthless in his pursuit and would allow nothing to
stand in his way.

He is the heir to Vera Katz and her decades of shady
dealings with the PDC and other local landed and wealthy interests.
Sam Adams is business as usual and I find the vitriol and frenzied
rhetoric lobbed against an at least well reasoned position merely
questioning whether his defense should be the focal point of our local
grassroots journalists and activists out of order.

Does anyone expect a Sam Adams administration to differ in character
from that of his predecessors? I pity them if they do. Insults and
bullying will not derail the efforts to recall the mayor, and will if
anything only embolden those who might otherwise have opposed such

I urge those who hurl superlatives to glance back over the history of
this site, and look at the corruption and back door dealing that has
and will characterize Sam Adam's and his mentor, Vera Katz's, time in
"public" service.

Sam is close to many a local or transplant plutocrat
with designs on the people of Portland's coffers. Look no further than
the unprecedented and impeding handout to the scion of the house of
Paulson in the form of not one, but two stadiums to be built out of
city funds designated as for "community development". This is just one
of the myriad of back door dealings to be enacted by Sam.

I ask those who oppose this way of operating government to stand down in their
misplaced outrage in Sam's defense. What of those who dream of the
real implementation of bold change as opposed to the mere placation of
such through hollow rhetoric.

Please don't waist our civic energy defending this seasoned political hack, who cries wolf about the "worst kind of gay smear", denigrating the legitimate struggles for acceptance sought by gays, queers, and other marginalized groups.

next up: mayor arnold schwarzenegger 28.Jan.2009 17:38

coming soon

Tom Potter is not coming back guys.

Do you even know who becomes Mayor if Adams resigns?

I don't. I do know nobody is telling us.