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It's official...Sowa is out
From the open publishing newswire: Clackamas county citizens have officially voted in Democrat Lynn Peterson, thus ending the political career of Larry Sowa. Ms. Peterson won by 1,278 votes. Sowa was quoted as saying he would not challenge the vote. "The thing's over with. I'm retiring." And so it goes.
My hope is that Ms. Peterson will be a little more connected when citizens come to the board with their concerns. The day we sat before Mr. Sowa and spoke about Fouad Kaady, I was struck by his appalling lack of interest. He let us fill our time, but I did not see that anything we said went past his desk. We, of course, knew that nothing dramatic would come from our meeting, but common courtesy would dictate that he at least acknowledge our concerns.
Secretary of State Betrays the Will of the People
From the open publishing newswire: Today, the Secretary of State issued a letter stating his intent not to implement any of Measure 47, despite the fact that it was enacted by voters in the November election.
"I am not going to comment a lot on the Secretary of State's letter, until I have a chance to discuss it with Hardy Myers." said Dan Meek, a volunteer lawyer with FairElections Oregon. "No one in Oregon government consulted with any of the supporters of Measure 47 before issuing this letter."
"I disagree that the substantive provisions of Measure 47 can be disregarded. The letter assumes that all of the limits on political contributions are unconstitutional, without any judicial determination of that conclusion. The reasoning in the letter appears to be circular, and assumes the existence of a court decision on Measure 47 that does not exist," said Meek.
Measure 47 Enacts Campaign Finance Reforms in Oregon
From the open publishing newswire:
"The Measure 47 limits on contributions will no doubt be attacked in court by the opponents," said volunteer lawyer Dan Meek. This will give the Oregon Supreme Court an opportunity to revisit its 1997 decision, striking down the limits that were enacted by Measure 9 of 1994. In addition, all of the important campaign finance disclosure and reporting and anti-coercion provisions in Measure 47 will take effect and do not in any way depend upon enactment of Measure 46."
"Oregon voters have shown they know that the current political system is broken and corrupt," said supporter Ken Lewis (former President of the Port of Portland). "If necessary, I will ask the Legislature to refer an amendment to voters so that all of Measure 47 can take effect." [ read more ]
Oregonians mostly back the status quo
It looks like Oregonians will be sending the same people back to congress next year. I suppose that's somewhat convenient not requiring anyone to learn new names or contact information. And Kulongoski has a pretty sizable lead over any of his challengers.
On the upside it looks like Measures 40, 41, and 48 will be soundly defeated as will 42, 45 and, notably, 43. Measure 44, the only measure in which a wide number of progressive groups supported, looks like it will pass as will Measure 39, which had support across the traditionally marketed political divisions, marking at least 2 changes that a majority of voters wish to see. [ read more ]
Last minute thoughts on Oregon's elections and ballot measures
From the open publishing newswire:
I've done a lot of thinking about the ballot measures and some of the races in this election and I wanted to share some of those thoughts. A lot of people have voted by now but some people are still trying to figure out what the results of some of the ballot measures could be. I can't claim to be right in my analysis but hopefully it will provide some food for thought.
related: [ A response from Oregon's Secretary of State's office to a question of election fraud | Vote Yes on Measures 46 and 47 | Sierra Club Ballot Measure Endorsements and Election Reminder | Small Business Association Endorses Campaign Finance Reform Measures 46 and 47 ]
Stolen election AGAIN? Help spark a general strike on Nov. 8
From the open publishing newswire: In two more weeks, it will happen again: vote-suppression tactics and uncounted "provisional ballots." Five to 11 point leads (i.e. in Georgia in '04) will vanish in a flurry of e-aberrations. If the House and Senate are up for grabs, the formula will simply be moderated. Instead of a four-seat lead for Bush's e-regime, it will go down to a modest two, plus an eleven-seat lead in the House.
It isn't a partisan issue. The US is being prevented from evolving.
Rarely, do we get a real choice in judicial elections- Mark KramerBut we do now, with Mark Kramer running for an open Circuit Court position in Multnomah County (#28). We have a wonderful opportunity to put a strong, smart, progressive lawyer on the bench. Mark is a strong advocate for access to justice issues.
Paul Loney Green candidate for state representative District 46Paul says... "I am an attorney and activist. I am seeking to connect the voters in my district with the platform and positions of the Pacific Green Party. I believe that voters are seeking a better way for our government to operate. Our state government can do a better job of finding sustainable solutions to the problems previous state legislatures have ignored. I have been involved with Neighborhood Associations in and around this district since 1992. I believe in the power of citizen activists."
related: Potter's police pension "reform" a costly (to you) sham | Time for spreading the word for a Revolution, Cascadians | Portland Greens take positions on upcoming Ballot Measures | 2006 Oregon Elections page at pdx indymedia
Oregon students have a lot to lose this election season
From the open publishing newswire: Oregon students have a lot to lose this election season. Ballot measure 41 poses a direct threat to the amount of funding school districts will receive.
Measure 41 would allow higher income tax deductions resulting in a smaller state general fund. The state school fund accounts for 46 percent of the state general fund.
Becca Uherbelau, the Defend Oregon Coalition Communications Director, said that Measure 41 would cut over 77 million dollars from the Oregon university system.
The Defend Oregon Coalition, made up of over 140 groups which represent over 900,000 Oregonians, was formed to oppose ballot measures that they feel "would hurt our state and take Oregon down the wrong path."
Vote NO on Initiative 933!
From the open publishing newswire: The Gifford Pinchot Task Force is urging its supporters to vote NO on Initiative 933. I-933 is the most extreme threat to Washington 's environment and quality of life in over a decade -- rolling back hard fought state and local protections. Please join us in voting NO on I-933!
Initiative 933 puts us in a no-win situation: we are either forced to pay some property owners to abide by our existing laws, or we have to waive those protections. For example, the Task Force is currently working hard to convince Skamania County to zone the forested Swift Reservoir area as commercial forest land so as to head off large scale development of recreation cabins in the currently un-zoned area. Even if we are successful in winning commercial forest land zoning, if I-933 passes, Skamania County will be forced to waive the zoning and allow large scale development because it will not have the funds to compensate the developers for their loss of future profits.
Kim Thatcher people took down our 9-11 sign!
From the open publishing newswire: We got word from a friend that they saw the Kim Thatcher sign crew yesterday putting up a sign right next to ours...then they took our sign! Guess the folks from the Kim Thatcher campaign arent into free speech. So I am going to spend my day taking down and discarding Kim Thatcher signs. I dont even know what party she is from , or what she is running for.
CaptainPlanet adds: Kim Thatcher is a Republican from Keizer, running for re-election to House Dist. 25. Her campaign website. A search on her name turns up: campaign money improprieties, the Thatcher campaign removing campaign signs (placed with landowner permission) of a competitor, she reportedly said that only businesses pay taxes, and apparently every progressive organization (Stand for Children is one) opposes her. Just a sampling, I'll bet she's even more odious than all that.
Christie Schaefer, Write-In Candidate State Senate Dist. 19
From the open publishing newswire: The most frequently asked questions about this campaign begin with "Why?" Why are we doing what we are? Why was I trying to get on the ballot? Why not just vote for a Democrat and hope for the best? Why a write-in campaign?
We are doing what we are doing- engaging in a write-in campaign in Oregon- to broaden the debate on such issues as the Iraq War, funding for schools, funding for health care, the erosion of democratic rights. All of these are issues which affect us on a daily basis and which have far-reaching consequences. We are doing it as a write-in campaing because, though we petitioned tirelessly, we did not, thanks in great part to HB 2614, passed by Democrats and Republicans in the State Legislature, get onto the ballot.
Aranas Rally/Hooley Protest in Salem Ignored by Mainstream Media
From the open publishing newswire: A group of Pacific Green Party supporters were threatened in Salem Monday with having their cars towed from a lot next to Democratic Congresswoman Darlene Hooley's office while they were engaged in a rally to support their candidate, Paul Aranas, and to protest Hooley's complicity with Bush Administration war crimes in the Middle East. The tow truck driver specifically stated that he was ordered to "tow away protestors' cars." The rally participants claimed that they were Hooley's constituents and that they were therefore legally entitled to park there. The lot was only partially full at the time.
Aranas and three other people spoke at the rally, which was ignored by the jonbenetstream media. After the speeches, a group including Aranas entered Hooley's office to submit petitions to her. She was reported unavailable for comment. Aranas has advanced consistent and principled positions on the war in Iraq as well as the conflicts in Lebanon and Palestine. He has formally asked Hooley to debate him twice, but she has so far refused.
Alternatives to Pro-War Senator Cantwell in Washington
From the open publishing newswire: "No, I don't think it was a mistake." - Senator Maria Cantwell of Washington State on January 19th, 2006 re-emphasizing her unyielding commitment to war on Iraq.
"The incumbent says she has "no regrets" for any of her numerous pro war votes. The majority of us in Washington regret very much the Iraq war, which is bankrupting us financially and morally. I am running to bring the troops and the military equipment home now and to use the billions of dollars in the war chest to rebuild America. It's time for progressive people to build a political machine against this feeling of powerlessness that the Democrats offer." - Aaron Dixon, former head of the Seattle chapter of the Black Panther Party, on why he is seeking the Green Party nomination for U.S. senate in Washington Sate.
Could Washington's Democratic primary be a replay of Connecticut's? Hong Tran is running against Cantwell in the WA Democratic primary for U.S. Senate---although you wouldn't know it if you walked passed the Demo HQ in Olympia. Like CT's Lamont, she opposes the war and advocates an immediate withdrawal. Hong Tran is challenging Cantwell.
She offers a progressive agenda, including: the quick withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, renegotiation or withdrawal from NAFTA and CAFTA, repealing the Patriot Act, and supporting social and economic justice for all! The Democratic Primary is September 19th. It will be a mail-in ballot.
TODAY: Portland Forum Confronts Misuse of Religion in Politics and Provides Practical Solutions
From the open publishing newswire: With congressional races heating up in Oregon and around the country, there is a lot of pressure for candidates to "look more religious," or to "talk more about faith." Meanwhile religious leaders want to help get out the vote, but need help navigating the fine line
How can the often divisive use of religion in politics be harnessed instead to promote diversity and strengthen our democracy? The Interfaith Alliance is dedicated to providing the very answers to that question.
The Interfaith Alliance is kicking off it's One Nation, Many Faiths, Vote 2006 program in Portland on August 23, 2006 at The Benson Hotel located at 309 SW Broadway. There will be issue trainings and skills building workshops as well as an evening town hall meeting to teach activists, religious leaders and candidates the skills they need to challenge religious political extremism, encourage civic participation, and promote religious liberty.
Two Campaign Finance Reform Initiatives Qualify For November Ballot
From the open publishing newswire: The Secretary of State today announced that both of the campaign finance reform initiatives sponsored by FairElections Oregon have qualified for the November 2006 general election ballot.
Supporters of the two measures filed over 280,000 signatures on Initiative Petitions 8 and 37. "These signatures have been gathered with an enormous effort that has included over 650 volunteer circulators and over 1,200 individual contributors," said David Delk, a chief petitioner on Petition 8.