Upper Left Coast

Thoughts on politics, faith, sports and other random topics from a red state sympathizer in indigo-blue Portland, Oregon.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Which candidates are taking shots at opponents?

In today's opinion section, Hasso Hering of the Albany Democrat-Herald tries to make an argument for his endorsed candidate, but inadvertently makes the case for Jason Atkinson as the next governor of Oregon.

Hering criticizes Kevin Mannix for attacking Ron Saxton with "one distortion after another," and asks, "is that the kind of politics we want?" He answers his own question:
According to what voters usually say, they are sick of the political games, especially negative attacks on opponents that barely avoid falsehoods but are built on distortions and unwarranted associations.
That's hilarious. Mannix is criticized for ads linking Saxton to Neil Goldschmidt ("as though most people in public life in Oregon were not at one time on good terms with the former governor," Hering says), even though those ads were funded separately from the Mannix campaign. But he gives Saxton a pass for his ads (paid for by the Saxton campaign) linking Mannix to Loren Parks. Both could be defined as "negative attacks on opponents that . . . are built on distortions and unwarranted associations."

Hering finishes by suggesting Saxton has run a positive campaign, has been someone who "tries to bring people together and look for solutions," because he didn't say anything negative about Mannix in an Albany appearance earlier this week. As if one appearance is a microcosm of the campaign. Never mind those unfortunate ads about Parks.

It is Hering's conclusion that makes the case for Atkinson:
Which candidate would make a better governor, do you think? Which one, as leader of the state, would have a better shot at getting the factions in Salem to work for solutions instead of taking shots?
Um, gee Mr. Hering . . . could it be the one who hasn't taken any shots at his opponents? The one who has the best ideas on PERS? The one who has stayed true to his ideals while others are shifting right to win the primary?

Yep, that's right. It's Jason Atkinson. You can choose one of the other two and reward the "political games" that Hering rightly criticizes. Or you can vote for Jason Atkinson, and make a statement that character matters, both personally and in the campaign.


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