Bizarre. That describes today’s endorsement of gubernatorial candidate Ron Saxton by the Portland Oregonian.
I usually find that the newspaper’s editorials make sense, even if I don’t agree with their position. But that wasn’t the case here. The Loaded Orygun blog sums up my attitude exactly: “The O has lost its fucking mind.”
How is it possible for the Oregonian to start off with this rendition of the state’s problems, then endorse Republican Ron Saxton?
This state has slipped and fallen. School funding is below the national average. Oregon is near the bottom in public support of universities. The number of troopers patrolling highways is only half of what the state mustered 30 years ago. Oregon's system of public finance is a mess, and Oregon, virtually alone among states, has no rainy day fund.
Saxton has never met a tax cut he didn’t like. Saxton says he has no inclination to seek more money to pay for needed services. When asked specifically where he would find efficiencies in state government that could produce savings for other programs, Saxton can’t come up with anything substantial.
He’s all talk and no plan. Yet somehow the Oregonian claims that Saxton brings new ideas for increasing public support of education, law enforcement, health care, and such. Well, what are they? I’ve been following the debates between Kulongoski and Saxton. I haven’t heard one practical positive policy idea come out of Saxton’s mouth.
It looks to me like someone at the Oregonian decided to endorse Saxton, then desperately tried to find reasons for that personal choice. He or she failed. Dismally.
Again, it wouldn’t bother me if the Oregonian has reasonable reasons for its endorsement. But the disconnect between the bottom line, “Vote for Saxton,” and the editorial’s content is disturbingly obvious.
The Oregonian blew it. Big time. Just like they did with their endorsement of George Bush in 2000, which made predictions that were spectacularly off the mark
Here are some other blog observations about this ridiculousness:
“The Oregonian’s Contradictory Saxton Stump”
“Pointing out the errors in the O’s Saxton endorsement”
Fortunately the Salem Statesman-Journal, my home town newspaper, got it right today: “Kulongoski is state’s best hope for leadership”