Flippity floppity. Which is the real Gordon Smith?

Kevin Kamberg

Gordon Smith has released a new ad which boldly misrepresents the truth on several issues. Chief among them is the following claim attributed to the Bend Bulletin and the Medford Mail Tribune.

"He's a moderate who... supports 'gay rights'"

Later in the same ad it says "Before you believe Merkley's ads, listen to those who know the truth."

In fact "the truth" is that the newspaper endorsements don't assert a blanket "supports gay rights," as Smith's ad clearly suggests. And the reason is quite simply because neither Smith's record nor his rhetoric could support such an assertion. The Mail Tribune asserts that Smith supports "most gay rights," which is itself a highly debatable assertion. What Smith has supported, at least in words, is hate crimes legislation. And that was arguably as much a PR stunt as anything else. But even if it was heartfelt, the Smith ad clearly distorts what the papers said. And the distortion doesn't end there.

A little over a week ago the Smith campaign gave the following statement to Jeff Mapes. "In the end, we do not think (Constitution Party candidate) Brownlow will impact the race. He will not be a spoiler." Not even a full week later the Smith campaign launched a new ad attacking Dave Brownlow. An accompanying radio ad charges that "Brownlow supports gay marriage," another blatent distortion of the truth. In fact, Brownlow supports getting the government out of the marriage business altogether.

Smith's TV ad claims that he "supports 'gay rights,'" while his radio ad simultaneously attacks Brownlow for... supporting gay rights.

Which is the real Gordon Smith? And when will he finally just be honest with Oregonians?

  • Rulial (unverified)

    What I found the most funny about Jeff Mapes's story is that Gordon Smith's ads blast Dave Brownlow as "Just too liberal". The idea of a Constitution Party candidate as "too liberal" is absolutely hilarious.

    I guess if Sen. Smith views himself as to the right of the Constitution Party candidate, that pretty much blows his "I'm a moderate" argument out of the water.

  • JJ (unverified)

    Using occasional support for gay rights to sell yourself as a moderate in Portland while simultaneously tapping into the anti-gay sentiments of conservatives to peel support away from Brownlow is the most shameful, win-at-all-costs stunt I have ever seen in Oregon.

    Do ANY editorial voices in Oregon remain independent and relevant enough to call him on this? Come on, Oregonian, are you so in the tank for Senator Smith that you will turn a blind eye to this? AP, you have been AWOL this entire campaign. Do you exist for anything other than horse race stories?

    I've seen many a politician talk out of both sides of his mouth before, but I have never once seen anything like this. Disgusting.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)

    Smith also claimed to be a student of military history when he made a speech in the senate suggesting he was opposed to the war on Iraq. If he voted for the war on Iraq he wasn't much of a student of history. If he had been a good student he would have understood Ancient Words Our Leaders Should Heed

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    Smith either

    A) already had the Brownlow attack ads in the can when they made the statement to Mapes.


    B) had already made the decision to make the ads and were in the process of making them when the statement was made to Mapes.

    Take your pick. Either way, the statement to Mapes was knowingly false. And they also knew it it was false as they either made or waited to release the ad deliberately misrepresenting Smith as someone who "supports 'gay rights.'"

  • (Show?)

    I get so tired of him using gay rights as a reason to elect him. It's a slap in the face of every gay person who is treated like a second class citizen because people like Gordon Smith oppose equal rights for them.

    The only thing that Smith has supported is hate crimes legislation, and that only sparingly.

  • Jiang (unverified)

    So, if everything your life is about and your religion is about exterminating a group and, when, under obligation of social contract and fiscal conservativism you vote not to further oppress that group, that makes you their supporter?

    Actually, there I think we have the definition of the "moderate Republican".

  • Ricky Nelson (unverified)

    Actually, there I think we have the definition of the "moderate Republican".

    Amnesty for all those that switch horses in the last few days!

  • RW (unverified)

    Personally, I am convinced there is a special place in Smith's religion's hell for having USED Matthew Shepherd as he did. After all, this is one or two commandments or at least a parable or two of what thou shalt not do. Ever.

    If he REALLY had a personal and emotional understanding of and connection to the REALITY of hate crime, specifically the one he is coattailing in this election... he just would not have made that choice.

    I've been unable to make myself even speak to this since those ads appeared.

    Because I do not want to start storytelling ad claustrophobium. I worked the frickin' EPICENTER of the AIDS epidemic in the epidemiological epicenters first, and then in the mythological hinterlands. I've SEEN this hate crime.

    Do you know I've got cherokee relatives so cancerous with this phobia that they went out to beat up a guy with bicycle chains NOT because he raped the toddler children of our mentally ill sister in law but because he TRIED TO GET WITH A GUY walking down a back road?

    NOT for the man on woman rape he performed that week, but b/c he was "sick enough" to try that on a guy. I stood alone in a snake's nest.

    Yes, Gordon Smith. you turn my stomache. Some tricks are too low, Gordon Smith. Some campaign tricks are TOO LOW, Gordon Smith.

    You have no respect for the pit of hatred and bloodshed, ignorance and dark fears you feed! And then you steal the light from the faces of angels thinking we won't know.

    <h2>Yes. I really have avoided speaking to this. We turned off the tv when that ad aired. It was too emotionally painful for me to watch. I cried. Some things should not be done.</h2>

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