City Club Smackdown, part 2

The Associated Press now has its coverage up. A few choice cuts...

Kulongoski challenged Saxton on his wishy-washy approach to Measure 48:

Kulongoski hammered away at the Saxton campaign's oft-repeated refrain that the state "needs new leadership," charging that Saxton evades questions, and hides his views on issues — from abortion rights to the proposed state spending limit on the November ballot, which both candidates have said they oppose.

"For God's sake, Ron, if you want to be the governor, tell the people this is bad," Kulongoski said. "I'd respect you more if you said you were for it, then fought for the courage of your convictions."

Ted also called out Ron as Bush Lite:

Kulongoski also relentlessly tried to tie Saxton to the Bush administration, noting Saxton's support for cuts in capital gains and estate taxes, and asking him whether he believes "Bush had been good for the state and this country?"

Saxton was evasive about specifics:

Saxton was flagged twice by a panel of City Club members for not giving complete answers to questions, including exactly what he'd cut to fulfill a pledge to trim 10 percent from state bureaucracy, and how much he'd hope to save. Saxton answered that he'd hope to bid out government work like printing, data processing and vehicle maintenance to the private sector, then added, "I don't have a number for you."

See/hear the debate yourself: The City Club has an MP3 of the debate available here. It will air on OPB radio tonight at 7 p.m., and on television here:

Portland Community Media Channel 30 - Friday 8 p.m., Sunday 4:30 p.m., Tuesday 6 p.m.

Channel 11 - next Friday 12:15 pm (only Channel 11 in Washington and Clackamas County)

PAX Television
Saturday, 6:00 am


  • myranda (unverified)

    I was there and Kulongoski was great. He called Saxton to task for Saxton's vague platform, his misleading ads, and his wishy-washy stance on several issues. Kulongoski also had a nice riff on what he's accomplished in four years during a very difficult economic period. Saxton was mad and it showed; his "game face" needs some work (in addition to his aforementioned platform, ads, and wishy-washiness).

  • stan harrison (unverified)

    I'm not surprised that Saxton didn't answer the Governor's or the City Club panel's questions. Maybe Blue Oregon (and some of its finest bloggers) should ask Saxton some tough questions. How about it?

  • Robert Ted Hinds (unverified)

    I for one am sick of the mindless Republican chant about cutting government waste and bureacracy. They cite that as the example of private industry, which can always do "it" better. The scientific truth is that maybe cutting costs is the way to maximize the output of government services, but maybe more investment is required. Without proper analysis, the answer to the question of whether eliminating government waste is a function of cost reduction of increased investment or some carefully measured portion of both, can't be answered. This is the equimarginal principal of economics, one of the bedrock foundations of capitalism and organizational design. Output of product or service is maximized at that point where marginal revenue is equal to marginal cost. No private capitalist would ever starve a profitable venture of the investment it deserves, because to do so would mean failure to capitalize on the opportunity. The blanket accusation that all pursuits of government are overfunded, without the due diligence that would be apparent by a candidate's ability to cite cogent examples of government waste, reveal that candidate's intellectual dishonesty and sycophantic motives.

  • Dog bites MAN (unverified)

    BlueOregon's faithful believe Kulo gave Saxton the smackdown.

    This is newsworthy? Wake me when you're done, dear.

  • Bob (unverified)

    I was there watching the debate and Saxton looks a lot like another Goli Ameri. That is, all negative and no real plan.

    Here are my grades:

    Ron Saxton-Did pretty well on his stump open/close, also scored a few minor points on immigration questions. However, his ducking of the questions was bad at best and really distracted from his performance. He seemed to be flailing at times. Grade: C-

    Ted Kulongoski-Very good except was a big negative at times. Responded well and controlled the debate. He made Ron lose his cool more than once, which is always a sign of doing well. Very solid performance. Grade: B+

  • russell f (unverified)

    OK, I am up to the challenge of asking Ron the tough questions.

    After much thought and observation about the TPG fiasco deal, and, reading the articles about Saxton's unethical behavior, I believe that there needs to be more questions asked. And, if some member of the media has the opportunity to ask him these questions, maybe, just maybe, we will find out the truth. Feel free to forward to all your friends:

    Questions to Ron Saxton:

    1. When did you first learn that TPG was attempting to purchase PGE?
    2. How did you learn that?
    3. What meetings or discussions did you participate in regarding TPG's purchase of PGE before November 18, 2003? With whom did you meet or discuss this?
    4. Did your firm represent Neil Goldschmidt prior to November 18, 2003?
    5. Did your firm represent Diana Goldschmidt prior to November 18, 2003?
    6. Did Neil and/or Diana Goldschmidt consult you regarding an Oregon Investment Council vote on investment in TPG? If so, when?
    7. Did Neil and or Diana Goldschmidt come to your office to consult with you on this subject? If so, when?
    8. Did you advise others in your firm about the TPG purchase of PGE? If so, when, and who in the firm did you advise?
    9. Did any meetings take place in your firm's offices with TPG regarding its purchase of PGE prior to November 18, 2003?
    10. Who attended those meetings? When did they take place?
    11. What members of your firm were involved in pursuing the representation of TPG in its purchase of PGE?
    12. On what date did any members of your firm first discuss with TPG the possibility of the firm representing TPG in its purchase of PGE?
    13. When did you or anyone else in your firm first discuss with Neil Goldschmidt the possibility of your firm representing TPG in its purchase of PGE?
    14. Did you ever discuss with anyone terminating your firm's representation of the City of Portland in attempt to purchase PGE?
    15. With whom did you discuss this?
    16. When did you first discuss this?
    17. Did you ever discuss with anyone a request to the City of Portland that it waive the conflict with your firm's representation of the City in the purchase of PGE and its representation of TPG in the purchase of PGE?
    18. With whom did you discuss this?
    19. When did you first discuss this?
    20. Which members of your firm received credit for the firm's engagement in the representation of TPG in the purchase of PGE?
    21. How much credit did you receive for the firms' engagement in the representation of TPG?
    22. Which members of your firm received credit for the firm's engagement in the representation of the City of Portland in the purchase of PGE?
    23. Did anyone outside the firm ever complain to you, object, or question your firm's representation of the City of Portland in the purchase of PGE?
    24. Who raised these complaints, objections or questions and when? What was the basis or nature of them?
  • Peter (unverified)

    I was there. The Governor did what he always does. LIE

  • Mister Tee (unverified)

    Russell F:

    I really like your list. I think we should ask Mr. and Mrs. Goldschmidt to answer the same list of questions.

    I also have a list of questions that I would like Sam "Lap Dog" Adams to answer about the back room negotiations he conducted on Vera's behalf...Trams, big developer subsidies, and that mysterious "Potter Endorsement" flyer that was circulated just before his upset victory over Nick Fish. Mayor Potter was very popular back then. Just ask the girls.

    And then ask Bernie what it was like driving Gov. Goldenrod around back in the day. And why he operates the most expensive jails on the west coast. And how come there are so many meth addicts on the Bus Mall downtown?

    I have a few questions for A.G. Hardly Matters. And it seems like Billy B. might be able to shed some light on how all those illegal aliens received Oregon D/L and motor voter registration.

    And why does Teddy want to impose California emission regulations on Oregonians? I thought we don't like CA?

    And what sort of drug cocktail is Tenskey taking? Can I have some?

  • Mister Tee (unverified)

    What are the odds that Diana Goldschmidt first learned of the Texas Pacific Group bid for PGE just a few hours AFTER she voted to give them $300 million?

    Wouldn't it be inconvenient if telephone records showed that David Bonderman had called Neil prior to 10/29/2003? But they were probably just talking about the Blazers/Rockets game, right? I wonder if Hardy "Har Har" Meyers bothered to request TPG's/Bonderman's phone records? That would seem to be a reasonable and prudent thing to do, given that TPG now has no interest in PGE, and would clearly like to avoid the appearance of any impropriety. I'm guessing you could just say please, and no subpoena would even be necessary. They've got nothing to hide, right? How could you say you conducted a complete investigation without phone records of the principal beneficiary of the $300 million who (just a few hours later) decided to seek the participation of an OIC board member's spouse? Without those records, it would look more like a whitewash than an investigation, doncha know.

    What did Diana know, and when did she know it? I mean, if we're going to investigate corruption no matter where we find it, it wouldn't be fair to just focus our attention on Republicans, right?

  • (Show?) juicy as dragging Neil and Diana Goldschmidt in to discuss the potential connections with Saxton...the point of this thread is the City Club Debate.

    To poster Peter: If you're going to post, give specifics. Kulongoski is as far from a liar as a person can get. Prove your stupid post or stop posting.

  • MOMAs Boy (unverified)


    Perhaps you would care to elaborate on how the clients of Ron Saxton's firm, AterWynne, are relevant to his pursuit of elected office?

    Perhaps Teddy K. would care to elaborate on how the corruption in the Teamsters and the AFL-CIO shouldn't tarnish the work he did for them back in the day. I mean, if his firm worked for them, they should both be tarnished by the same brush of guilt by association.

    And considering the "Buy Oregon" preference of the BO faithful, why would y'all support a Governor that was born and educated in Missouri vs. a 4thGen Oregonian, who grew up in (and attended high school at) West Albany?

  • (Show?)

    "And considering the "Buy Oregon" preference of the BO faithful, why would y'all support a Governor that was born and educated in Missouri vs. a 4thGen Oregonian, who grew up in (and attended high school at) West Albany?"

    Because Ron's obviously never managed to recover from that soul-killing experience.

    doretta (AUHS class of '69)

  • Peter II (unverified)

    I was there as well. The problem with our guy is he doesn't stand for anything, and when he does, you can be certain that he'll fail to take up the challenge or change his mind. Looked good? Absolutely. He's not the same guy we knew twenty years ago. He's just not someone a rational person would go into business with without some major "out-clauses". His opponent? Hmmmmm. I think he's at least ideologically honest. Most frustrating. I hate to say it, but I rate their City Club performance as Ted (D+) and Ron (C-). This one's going to be close. Peter N., NE Portland

  • (Show?)

    I'll take Ted, who grew up in an orphanage, put himself through college and law school working in a steel mill, served in the Marines, is a former boxer, began his law career representing the "little guys" and has always stood by the working class. He's been in Oregon for his entire career serving the citizens of Oregon as a Supreme Court Justice to the Governorship. Kulongoski is much more representative of people who've pulled themselves up by the bootstraps. Ted's worked all his life to help all of the people of Oregon.

    You can have the wealthy corporate lawyer, who fakes rural roots, had a fake address so his son could attend Lincoln High School, who is a Portland Metro citizen, more comfortable in the Pearl District than in Grants Pass, has publically admitted to being a part owner in a farm that employed illegal immigrants and has had a Republican transplant from being a moderate Republican to a hard right winger to make his run for Governor. You can have all the outside interest groups, NOT from Oregon who are funding Saxton's campaign. You can have a guy who has only served on a the Portland Puplic School Board, regarded by many as the worst run public school district in Oregon. You can support Saxton for his responsibility for terrible management decisions while serving on the board which cost Oregon tax payers over a half million dollars. Worse, Saxton cannot give specifics on how he will fund any one thing he has proposed. You can have vague, wishy-washy Saxton, a man with no plan.

  • LT (unverified)

    One more thing: the candidates' views on the role of the legislature.

    Saxton's point of view seems to be that everything which happened in Oregon in the last 4 years is solely the responsibility of the Governor. Does he believe the legislature isn't important, has no power, or what?

    For all his flaws (he's far from the guy we knew more than 20 years ago), I'll take the former legislator over the school board guy who ignores the legislature. As with another Gov. who only had local Portland experience prior to winning a close election, if Saxton is elected Gov. he will discover just how much power those 90 legislators have (passing bills, potential veto overrides, not to mention the state budget).

    I said as much to the editorial page editor of our local paper who wrote back, " I appreciate your comments. "

  • Max (unverified)

    The Oregonian just endorsed Ron Saxton for governor.

    Kulongoski's time in office has been THAT bad.

    Among the problems noted in the endorsement: Kulongoski has exhibited have been a marked reluctance to interact with the legislature - which should pretty much answer LT's query above.

    Aside from endorsing Gordon Smith, I can't really recall the last time the big O endorsed a Republican for any major office. I'd say Ted's got his work cut out for him.

  • jrw (unverified)

    Re Max's comment--


    The Oregonian generally biases Republican. Always has.

    Endorsing Saxton is not a surprise to me. What's going on is an attempt to "balance" the negative coverage they've been giving him. Typical Goryonion strategy.

  • myranda (unverified)

    Ugh on that editorial. So, Blue Oregonians, write a letter to the editor RIGHT NOW and let them know how intellectually dishonest their endorsement is. Saxton doesn't stand for ANY of the positions that The O has taken on ballot measures, for example.

  • A.Y. Caramba (unverified)

    Ron Saxton reveals the details that will save Oregon!

    Our beloved Republican candidate for Governor Ron Saxton has confounded the critics once again! Yes, the very critics who have been critical of his refusal to reveal the details of his plan to save Oregon. Yes! The critics are once again confounded. Ha!

    First of all, I say to the critics: “Ron Saxton is a high-powered corporate attorney who doesn’t need to show you any stinking details.” There, I said it. You should all try to get a real job, maybe somewhere else if you hate America so much.

    That being said, our beloved Republican candidate for Governor Ron Saxton has begun phase 2 of his campaign, which is ripe—even swollen, absolutely bursting—like a pomegranate—with details, the very details which will save Oregon and—by extension—all of America.

    Oregon voters already understand his plan to secure funding for the Oregon State Police by creating efficiencies in the prison food system, while simultaneously reducing energy consumption in prison kitchens. These are known facts.

    And Oregon voters also understand his proposal to end foreign word invasion of our beloved English language, by requiring all foreigners to speak English or get out. And to punish the America-hating librarians who put books written by foreigners in our beloved American public libraries, paid for by honest, hard-working property-owning English-speaking taxpayers.

    The critics have been hounding our beloved Republican candidate for Governor Ron Saxton for not providing the details of his plan to save Oregon’s schools, but these critics are now confounded. Ha! Yes!

    First of all, Ron Saxton has stated many times, over and over again, that he can find efficiencies that will save Oregon schools, just as he has solved the Oregon State Police funding problem by finding efficiencies in the prison system, and he has done this without even being Governor yet.

    In addition to the aforementioned efficiencies, which were found by our beloved Republican candidate for Governor Ron Saxton, Ron Saxton has determined that the Oregon Republican Party platform contains many details that—taken together as a whole—will combine to save our state and our beloved America, which is under assault from foreigners and Democrats and other vile persons.

    For your information, sections of the Oregon Republican Party platform are quoted below:

    “A. All legislation should be based upon the premise that progress in education can only be achieved if each component of change is based upon proven principles. To rebuild a sound educational system, we recognize: All educational authority flows from our Creator to parents who may in turn delegate, at their discretion, that authority to professional educators;”

    Ha! What can be more efficient than hiring the Creator and parents to teach our beloved Oregon children? What can be more efficient than using proven principles?

    ”C. History, especially the history of western civilization with its foundational Judeo-Christian values, provides essential experience from which to understand the nature of man as well as choose a future course of action.”

    Ha! And they say that Ron Saxton is too busy to care about history, but here are the details of his education plan—and you see that history is mentioned twice—in the same paragraph! Ha!

    “2.4.1 English shall be taught as the official language…. English education for non-English speaking students should be accomplished by immersion. We also encourage adult legal immigrants to learn English.”

    Ha! Immersion in prison! Efficiencies! Foreigners are criminals! Let them learn English in jail where they belong! Ron Saxton will stomp the nose of the camel, the nose that is peeking under the tent of our beloved America.

    ”2.4.3 Science curricula shall accommodate diverse theories of origins.”

    Ha! Ron Saxton will turn the tables on the kookoo balls who claim that Americans were descended from monkeys. Maybe foreigners were descended from monkeys, but that is not Oregon’s problem.

    ”2.10. We encourage the inclusion of voluntary firearms safety and hunting safety curricula as well as the support of rifle and other marksmanship clubs in government schools.

    Ha! Guns in schools! With proper safety and training! Provided by parents and the Creator! Ha! Is that enough detail for you? The critics are confounded.

    ”2.12 We support the abolition of the United States Department of Education and the Oregon Department of Education.”

    Yes! Abolish them! Abolish them all! Our beloved Republican Candidate for Governor will abolish them! And the US Postal Service! Abolish! Abolish them! Efficiency! Genius!

    ”2.13. We support privatization of non-educational support services now being performed by government school districts to foster cost effectiveness in such areas as transportation, school meals, etc.”

    Yes! As he has found efficiencies in the prison system, Ron Saxton has found similar efficiencies in schools. We spend too much money on buses and food in schools. Schools are for learning, and rifle practice.

    ”2.14. We stand opposed to state and federal funding of pre-schools including Head Start.”

    Yes! Ron Saxton will eliminate all funding for Head Start and other feel-good inefficient programs. Ron Saxton will fund only efficient programs, taught by parents and/or the Creator.

    Lastly, to those critics who have lambasted our beloved Republican Candidate for Governor Ron Saxton and the Republican Party platform for having no solution to the large size of classes in Oregon schools, I say “Ha!”

    Ron Saxton has also solved this problem, the one of large classes, with a very simple solution: drywall. Drywall, installed by prisoners. Not foreign-word-speaking prisoners, but efficient American English-speaking prisoners. Ha! You want smaller class sizes, Ron Saxton will build them as small as you want.

  • RodAvlas (unverified)

    Aside from endorsing Gordon Smith, I can't really recall the last time the big O endorsed a Republican for any major office.

    I guess President isn't a major endorsement then. The Oregonian usually endorses Republicans, making a notable break in 1992 and 1996, when it endorsed Clinton and in 2004, when it endorsed John Kerry.

  • RodAvlas (unverified)

    In fact, I think that the main reason why the Oregonian has tended to endorse Democrats in recent Gubernatorial races is that Republicans were sending nut-cases like Sizemore and Mannix into the general election.

  • paulie huh? (unverified)

    paulie - please cite: "publically admitted to being a part owner in a farm that employed illegal immigrants"

    we have enough to go on, that we ought not lie about this stuff.

  • LT (unverified)

    Max, All the Oregonian "all these things we dislike about Saxton but we are taking a leap of faith and endorsing him" says is that more than 150 years after it was founded, what my Pacific NW history prof. said still rings true: "The Oregonian was founded as a Whig paper and it still is".

  • Sid Anderson (unverified)

    When Saxton talks about privatizing certain aspects of Oregon's government to cut costs, I wonder... does it truly cut costs? Would the executives at those companies actually make less in salaries and benefits than the public workers doing the same jobs? For example, do the public employees who manage the Oregon Health Plan earn any where near what the executives who mangage, say, LifeWise?

    If these privatized schemes weren't such huge cash cows for the corporate executives who get their friends into office, or become part of the revolving door, a la Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld, and were truly saving tax payer dollars particularly for the middle and working classes, then maybe there could be a conversation here. But "privatization" these days is code for "getting maximum tax payer dollars into your corporate friends' pockets" and it comes at the expense of cutting out public employees who earn middle class incomes. In the meantime the public recieves inferior services from privatized workers who make minimum wage while their bosses rake it in.

  • john (unverified)

    Saxton is a meat-head

    <h2>(p.s. He has a weird looking throat and his voice is kind of weird)</h2>
in the news 2006

connect with blueoregon