Kulongoski punches; Saxton tries to dodge

The first gubernatorial debate is in the books. Closed to the public, the Oregonian has the story:

Kulongoski repeatedly jabbed at Saxton, portraying him as a corporate attorney more concerned with protecting the wealthy and the drug and pharmaceutical industries than in working on behalf of average families. ...

Saxton did side-step one big issue. He said he wouldn't campaign for or against the proposed state spending limit on the ballot - but he never said whether he personally favored it. Kulongoski said it would prevent needed investments in education, health care and other services. After the debate, Saxton did not take questions, but his campaign manager, Felix Schein, said Saxton supports the ballot measure, but believes it is imperfect. ...

Kulongoski repeatedly blasted Saxton for once suggesting the state could lay off public employees en masse and then rehire them with different pension benefits. Saxton said that he wasn't advocating that but there were "carrots and sticks" that could be used to get more pension savings out of public employees.

Kulongoski charged that Saxton won't be as aggressive in protecting the environment. "I don't think drill more, pollute more" is the answer, the governor said.

Saxton responded that he wanted to use incentives to achieve better environmental results than more regulations from state government.

Update: From the Associated Press:

In their first debate, Democratic Gov. Ted Kulongoski on Friday accused Republican rival Ron Saxton of being a tool of corporate interests who has opposed moves to regulate payday loan shops and to impose tougher auto tailpipe emission rules.

Also, KATU-2 is running an online poll - who do you intend to vote for?


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    I guess Saxton means he isn't advocating mass layoffs ANYMORE--because it's a stone cold fact that he DID advocate it last year. (Ted let him skate on Saxton's other loopy plan, to deport all undocumented aliens. Good luck picking cherries and fighting fires by yourself, Ron.)

    I'm sure Felix Schein would have preferred to get further into the campaign without having to admit it, but now the cat's out of the bag: Ron Saxton supports the same spending plan for Oregon that 'redder' Coloradans--including the GOP governor and a big chunk of their biz community--punted off the books after a miserable decade under its thrall. Now that the curtain's been pulled away, I guess he's free to start accepting those laundered contributions from Grover Norquist.

    From the writeup (for what that's worth), sounds like Ted had Ron backing up much of the time. We're talking about Ted KULONGOSKI, right?

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    "The two did agree on one thing: the state will have to look more at toll roads to improve the transportation system."

    Talk, talk, talk. Look, look, look.

    Which ones will get built? Where's the funding to subsidize the roads? Where's the funding when the roads don't meet projections?

    The Denver Post found toll roads fail in their projected revenues, and a recent study found costs of congestion are overstated.

    Don't these folks ever read PortlandTransport.com? Study up, folks!

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    Yeah, Kulongoski - the former Teamster and Marine. Glad he's remembering how to throw down.

  • IloveTed (unverified)

    He was also a good gloves boxer.

  • Jim Ross, campaign manager, Kulongoski for Governor (unverified)

    This was one of the best debate performances I have ever seen. I sat in the audience and kept saying to myself "I wish this was live TV, I wish this was live TV..." The Governor did a fantastic job, clearly better than Saxon. We still have a long way to go but this was a great opening act...

    Yes the cat is out of the bag I read Blue Oregon.

  • Patty Wentz, Our Oregon (unverified)

    Don McIntire and Jason williams must be pitching fits right now. First during the debate Saxton treats their measure like the crazy uncle in the attic that no one talks about and then afterwards his spokesperson says it's "imperfect."


    There are so many flaws in the Oregon TABOR, though, it's hard to knwo which imperfection Felix is referencing.

    Is it that its signature gatherers were paid in cash on the street like drug dealers? Could be.

    Is it that its more extreme than Colorado's TABOR? Maybe.

    Is it because Colorado's business leaders are warning other states away from TABOR and led the fight to suspend it last year? Possibly.

    Is it that Colorado's educational system went into shambles and there were actual discussions last year of selling off state universities because they couldn't afford to operate them? That sounds imperfect to me.

    Oh, and what about the fact that Oregon TABOR will make it more difficult for the state to build and maintain a rainy day fund because of it's crazy ass provision to count the Unemployment Insurance trust fund against "state spending?" That's a great example of imperfection.

    For more information on the imperfect TABOR and BIll Sizemore's Tax Scam, go to www.defendoregon.org.

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    Welcome, Jim, to the sane-house. And good going for the Governor. It sounds like he did really well.

  • Norman Henderson (unverified)

    I'm new to Oregon and I have one question:

    What kind of election debate is closed to the public??? I've never heard of such a thing.

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    I hope someone at least videotaped it.

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    Yeah, I did tape it, but unfortuanately I taped a boxing match over it last night. All I can say is one guy really got knocked down a bit.

    Or was that a hockey game. Remember the old antage, "I went to a fight and a hockey game broke out." Or was that "I went to a fight and a debate broke out."

    just kidding

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    That KATU poll, despite being a (way) non-scientific, non-random sample of Portlander, reveals some interesting numbers. So far, with 1151 responses (5:48 pm, Saturday), here's what it's looking like:

    36% - Ted Kulongoski - Democrat 16% - Ron Saxton - Republican 11% - Mary Starrett - Constitution Party 1% - Richard Morley - Libertarian 1% - Joe Keating - Pacific Green Party 36% - Ben Westlund - Independent

    Anyone happen to know of other sites funneling voters there? Because the Westlund and Starrett numbers (and even Saxton) are pretty surprising.

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    Those numbers, once more:

    36% - Ted Kulongoski - Democrat 16% - Ron Saxton - Republican 11% - Mary Starrett - Constitution Party 1% - Richard Morley - Libertarian 1% - Joe Keating - Pacific Green Party 36% - Ben Westlund - Independent

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    Yeah those numbers are way off...

    I'd say Kulongoski's are a little high, but Saxton's are way off (too low) as are Westlund's and Starrett's (too high).

    The problem with polls like this is they are open to skewing and only those that know about the poll vote in them. Furthermore, it takes access to a computer to participate.

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    Incidentally, Westlund's campaign people attempted to Freep that poll.

    Or in other words, they sent out an email to their list with a link to that poll asking everyone to vote for Westlund on it.

  • Ed Bickford (unverified)

    Calling this a poll is not technically correct if it is not accomplished by random sampling.

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    I'm pretty sure most dictionaries don't require a random sample for something to be called a poll. You can poll your coworkers to see where to go for lunch. We have polls around here from time to time. In fact, I'd say very few polls feature random sampling. If you're trying to get an accurate measure of a large group, random sampling is important to find anything meaningful, but that certainly isn't a definitive requirement.

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    it doesn't have to be randomly sampled to be a poll, but it does if you want to call it a "scientific" poll that people can take seriously as a representative barometer of public opinion. In other words, we have no idea if KATU's poll respondents accurately represent the breadth of voters in Oregon. With a scientific poll, we do.

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