Quick hits: 19 days to ballots edition

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

Here's a TV spot from Will Rassmusen, the Democratic candidate in HD-37 (West Linn and environs.) Rasmussen's running against Julie Parrish, who was the subject of Carla's post on Saturday. The race between Rasmussen and Parrish is one of the hottest in the state - and represents a pick-up opportunity for Democrats. Go help Will here.

The Hillsboro Argus endorsed Ron Wyden in the U.S. Senate race, which is a bit of a surprise - as they admit - since the Argus has typically been one of Oregon's most conservative newspapers. They were pretty darn dismissive of Jim Huffman: "All his opponent can really say is that we need change in Washington. We've heard that before. Ron Wyden is one who needs to stay."

Should Portland dedicate more public funds to art? That's the question asked over at the Portland Mercury. Interesting bit of data: The Portland region spends $3.11 per capita, vs. $7 per capita in Seattle, and $15 in Denver.

Good to see that Politifact has come to Oregon. I've always appreciated that they do a hard fact-check on political statements, rather than "reporting the controversy" or "telling both sides of the story." Statements of fact are either true or untrue, and more journalists should make that plain.

Two Republican candidates - Jim Huffman and Delia Lopez - have already rated the first "pants on fire" ratings. Lopez for her oft-stated silly claim that Earl Blumenauer wants to "mandate GPS tracking devices on all our vehicles." Huffman for his TV spot that claims Ron Wyden spent $2 million studying exotic ants.

Steve Duin has a nice profile of top GOP operatives Lori Hardwick and Dan Lavey in the Oregonian, though there's an odd headline - "the best political team in Oregon". Why odd? Well, they're both really good at what they do, but other than Gordon Smith '96 and '02, they haven't won any other statewide races.

On the ballot measure front, the Nature Conservancy dropped a cool million bucks on the Yes on 76 campaign. The Portland Tribune takes a look at Measure 77, which would legalize Oregon's first taxpaying casino.

The Washington Post covers Peter DeFazio's quest to figure out what anonymous individuals are funding the shadow group running attack ads in his race. (Their video is also definitely worth watching.)

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    Full disclosure: My firm built campaign websites for Earl Blumenauer, Peter DeFazio and Ron Wyden. I speak only for myself.

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    On the question of a dedicated source of additional funding for the arts, I'd now vote no, like I'm going to vote no on the Trimet, fire, and historical society measures. I'm for putting schools first. Until we get our schools funded properly (and with more Mandarin immersion classes, more use of online ed, and a high school study abroad program) - until those happen, I'm a probable no vote on lots of otherwise good measures. And if we throw money away on the Columbia River Crossing boondoggle, that money's gone, so don't look for me to fund much else. We could have used CRC funds (public funds are public funds, we need to set the right priorities) for lots of other, higher priority projects - like education, the arts, buses, fire equipment and preserving our history. We have to make choices.


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