More TV Ads to Chew On: Smith, Nolan, Fritz, Novick

Evan Manvel

Once again, for those of us who get our news from the internet and/or the newspaper, I'm posting a handful of television ads for readers to view and discuss.

The most interesting ad is the new Jefferson Smith ad. Jefferson frames the CRC highway mega-project as a matter of priorities, and refers to tax breaks and projects "we can't afford." The ad highlights four endorsements - AFSCME, the Portland Association of Teachers, the Portland Firefighters Association, and the Portland Police Association.

Mary Nolan's spot features a firefighter talking about the problems faced with the new 911 system, then takes two-thirds of the ad to touch on some of her leading endorsements, including Planned Parenthood, Barbara Roberts, and Vera Katz.

Amanda Fritz's ad shows her walking around Portland with her supporters giving her a thumbs up. It's an ad focused on "pinching pennies." (Side note: a currency amount Canada recently stopped minting, and I wish we would too.) Some of these claims of savings are disputed, but it's Fritz's central message.

Finally, Steve Novick's ad is well, less interesting than his old Senate ads (as Jeff Mapes notes, he "plays it safe"). Novick hints at some policy ideas, including making Portland a leader in reducing health care costs and investing in crime prevention. They don't really fit the 30-second ad format but the ad introduces Novick to voters who've somehow forgotten his amazing old ads.

Here's one of his old ads:

And a post about it from Wonkette, that has sadly lost its old comment thread.

Disclaimer: I've endorsed Mary Nolan, Steve Novick, and Jefferson Smith, as has Bike Walk Vote, which I co-chair. I've done some consulting work on the CRC highway mega-project. I speak only for myself.

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      I am in agreement about Jefferson and Novick, but sway towards Nolan> I heard Amanda's explanation in chambers during sessions on broadband planning for the 911 IT glitches; potential design issues s/h/b spotted and tested before the system live. I heard her spontaneously address the Occupy, saying they should all go home and volunteer for existing NGOs and causes that represented the issues instead of Occupying; many of the Occupiers present that day were die-hard activists already, and even now are the volunteers for this election cycle.

      I have worked in a small way on some of the initiatives under Amanda's charge. I like Amanda a lot. The people in the City who work under her like to work for her. But I want to give Nolan a chance. Being concerned about consensus in a Commission form of government because we are turning over the Mayor is not a good reason to hold on when a fresh voice might help vitalize things.

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        Thanks, Evan!

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        Oh and I should hasten to point out that I can't take credit for the Common Sense Alternative itself. I just drew the pictures. The CSA is the work of Jim Howell and George Crandall. Jim has a long history in Portland transportation and neighborhood advocacy, including fighting against the Mt. Hood Freeway, which would have torn through SE Portland along the southern edge of Ladd's Addition. And George is a local architect with an impressive record of accomplishments. I'm pretty sure I heard somewhere that George was a project manager on the Mt. Hood Freeway. So I figure these guys know a boondoggle when they see one.

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    Novick and Nolan both strongly oppose campaign finance reform. Keep them from buying their way into office using special interest money. They will continue to oppose campaign finance reform in office. Novick is taking big money from polluters and has sold out the Willamette River cleanup. Nolan was a champion of antidemocratic rule changes in the legislature. If you care about Democracy and community involvement, Fritz and White or Williams are the way to vote. Nolan cannot even run a positive campaign as she has no positive record from which to advocate progressive accomplishments.

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    Nolan has a lifetime of accomplishments and positive record to run on, and most of her campaign is about those.

    She's received huge props from Planned Parenthood, 1000 Friends, and many others, including Ken Allen from AFSCME, who says "At a time when working families are facing challenges like never before, we have never had to wonder whose side Mary Nolan is on."

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    Thanks for highlighting Mary Nolan's ad. It must be tough to condense all of her accomplishments into 30 seconds. Planned Parenthood PAC of Oregon is proud to have endorsed Mary Nolan. She is a staunch supporter of women's health care and has been vital in successfully defeating every statewide anti-choice ballot measure Oregon has ever faced.

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    Jefferson Smith provides a critical point of contrast with his main rivals by opposing the CRC. All three contenders are left-of-center but Smith steps forward as the voice of fiscal sanity, suggesting a vote for Brady or Hales will force tax hikes or program cuts. Budgets are a zero-sum game and Smith is the only candidate with the common sense to understand the economic peril to Portland this boondoggle represents. Trade-offs are inevitable if the project continues unabated. Smith gets it.

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      Chris, how much money would the city of Portland spend on the "boondoggle" should it actually come to be?

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        Frankly it's hard to do the math on that, which is part of the problem with the project.

        The City of Portland would lose out on funds that the state could use on road maintenance (as they have up to this point - a lot of the funds used for the mega-project have been maintenance funds). And $450 million of state funds is a bunch.

        No one has clear answers on where the likely billion+ dollar overrun will be covered from. The City has backfilled various projects in the past, from the Sellwood to the Streetcar. I imagine they'd be asked to chip in tens of millions here.

        As the federal government and state government's trends on road funding are down, we're looking at a future of more financial responsibilities being taken over by local governments. That's the message being given by the Governor's Sustainable Communities and Transportation Advisor.

        This is a 30+ year bill. Someone's going to have to pay. Who that is isn't really clear, so putting it on the credit card ain't a great idea.

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    Full disclosure: My firm built Eileen Brady's campaign website. I speak only for myself.


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