This Week in the Mercury

Our "How to Do Summer" Guide, Part Two!


Our "How to Do Summer" Guide, Part Two!

The Mercury's Summertime Guide to Food and Boozin'!

How to Pair Drinks with Any Summer Activity


How to Pair Drinks with Any Summer Activity

Pairing Booze, Beer, or Wine with any Hot Weather Event

Election 2012

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Romney Tattoos Are Not Forever

Posted by Paul Constant on Thu, Nov 29, 2012 at 2:44 PM

Remember the Romney face tattoo guy? He's had a change of heart:

Hartsburg tells POLITICO he plans to get the tattoo lasered off, a process that could take a year...[Hartsburg] heard some of Romney’s post-election comments, most notably his claim that the president won reelection because of “gifts” given to various constituencies.

“It stands not only for a losing campaign but for a sore loser,” Hartsburg said. “He’s pretty shameful as far as I’m concerned, man. There’s no dignity in blaming somebody else for buying votes and paying off people. I can’t get behind that or stay behind that.”

When a guy who would accept money to get a face tattoo calls you "shameful," you know you've hit rock bottom.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

GOPers Finally Coming to Terms With Mitt Romney's Unexpected Defeat

Posted by Goldy on Tue, Nov 20, 2012 at 1:44 PM

So, lets say you're a despondent Republican who'd been lulled into a false sense of Mitt Romney's inevitability by a misplaced trust in the math wizardry of Dean Chambers, the man behind How do you come to terms with Romney's unexpectedly crushing defeat? By buying into Chambers' latest endeavor, of course: (love that name), a website that alleges President Obama stole the election through voter fraud in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Florida!

Just look at those four states: They're black! So you know there's gotta be a lot of fraud!

Look at the evidence: Those states are colored in black! That cant be good.
  • Look at the evidence: Those states are colored in black! That can't be good.

God, I wish I had no scruples, so that I could become rich and famous too.
[via TPM]

Monday, November 12, 2012

Christian Right: "How come nobody wikes us? All we wanna do is persecute gay famblies and force women to have wape babies. And nobody wikes us! Wah!"

Posted by Dan Savage on Mon, Nov 12, 2012 at 9:59 AM

A delicious, page-one story in Saturday's NYT:

Christian conservatives, for more than two decades a pivotal force in American politics, are grappling with Election Day results that repudiated their influence and suggested that the cultural tide—especially on gay issues—has shifted against them.... It is not as though they did not put up a fight; they went all out as never before: The Rev. Billy Graham dropped any pretense of nonpartisanship and all but endorsed Mitt Romney for president. Roman Catholic bishops denounced President Obama’s policies as a threat to life, religious liberty and the traditional nuclear family. Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition distributed more voter guides in churches and contacted more homes by mail and phone than ever before.

“Millions of American evangelicals are absolutely shocked by not just the presidential election, but by the entire avalanche of results that came in,” R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, in Louisville, Ky., said in an interview. “It’s not that our message—we think abortion is wrong, we think same-sex marriage is wrong—didn’t get out. It did get out. It’s that the entire moral landscape has changed,” he said. “An increasingly secularized America understands our positions, and has rejected them.”

Cue the sad trombone!

Play the tiny violin!

Get Nelson in here!

Friday, November 9, 2012

That Had to Hurt

Posted by Dan Savage on Fri, Nov 9, 2012 at 1:29 PM

Who got a bigger percentage of the Mormon vote: George W. Bush or Willard M. Romney?



Mitt Romney's Campaign Really Believed He Was Going to Win, Right Up Until He Lost

Posted by Paul Constant on Fri, Nov 9, 2012 at 9:59 AM

This CBS News report about the last day of the Romney campaign is full of interesting little bits. Here's a good part, from right after Romney learned he'd lost Ohio:

"He was shellshocked," one adviser said of Romney.

Romney and his campaign had gone into the evening confident they had a good path to victory, for emotional and intellectual reasons. The huge and enthusiastic crowds in swing state after swing state in recent weeks - not only for Romney but also for Paul Ryan - bolstered what they believed intellectually: that Obama would not get the kind of turnout he had in 2008.

They thought intensity and enthusiasm were on their side this time - poll after poll showed Republicans were more motivated to vote than Democrats - and that would translate into votes for Romney.

We're already getting a lot of information about what the inside of the Romney campaign looked like, and it's not pretty. The only thing this campaign seemed to do well was raise money—not shocking, considering Romney's pedigree—but they appeared to have no idea about what it takes to realistically win an election. And you can bet that angry former Romney insiders will start squealing to the press immediately, because the Romney campaign treated them pretty much the same way Bain Capital treated employees of companies they leveraged:

From the moment Mitt Romney stepped off stage Tuesday night, having just delivered a brief concession speech he wrote only that evening, the massive infrastructure surrounding his campaign quickly began to disassemble itself.

Aides taking cabs home late that night got rude awakenings when they found the credit cards linked to the campaign no longer worked.

"Fiscally conservative," sighed one aide the next day.

I have a feeling that the more we learn about this campaign, the more shocked we're going to be that Romney even came as close as he did.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

President-Elect Romney's Transition Website Briefly Went Online

Posted by Paul Constant on Thu, Nov 8, 2012 at 2:14 PM

Hot tipper Gale sent this Yahoo story about the Romney campaign's transitional website:

The site appeared online on Wednesday and was taken down—but not before Taegan Goddard, a blogger for Roll Call's Political Wire, captured screenshots, which included a "President Elect" seal, information about the inauguration, a fresh tagline ("Smaller, Simpler, Smarter") and a quote from the Republican nominee ("I'm excited about our prospects as a nation. My priority is putting people back to work in America.").

Go check out the screenshots and imagine yourself visiting this website in an alternate universe where Romney won. It'll make today extra-sweet. The bad news, though, is that by electing President Obama, we missed out on a bitchin' fireworks show.

The Time Has Come for National Vote-by-Mail

Posted by Goldy on Thu, Nov 8, 2012 at 11:29 AM

In his victory speech, President Barack Obama made a point of calling out the inexcusable mess that is election day throughout much of the nation:

“I want to thank every American who participated in this election … whether you voted for the very first time or waited in line for a very long time. By the way, we have to fix that.

Whether it was due to incompetence or bad weather or intentional voter suppression, millions of Americans were forced to wait for hours to exercise their right to vote, and/or jump through unnecessary bureaucratic hoops in an effort to claim that right. That it is mostly Republicans who are pushing through legislation to require voter ID or to eliminate early voting or to purge the voter rolls of foreign sounding names is evidence enough that one party is seeking to disenfranchise voters for partisan gain. And as President Obama said, we have to fix that.

And the easiest fix would by national vote-by-mail.

If Congress required every state to offer a vote-by-mail option to all registered voters who request it, it would go a long way toward eliminating the long lines at polling places we see every election day, by eliminating Republicans' ability to create these lines in the first place. No citizen could be denied the right to vote for lack of a drivers license, or be forced to miss a half day of work due to an understaffed polling place.

Here in Oregon and Washington, there are no lines on election day other than the lines at the bars at the election night parties. If we could drink-by-mail, we could fix that problem too.

Vote-by-mail is an efficient, secure process that guarantees a paper trail and eliminates most voter suppression tactics. It's not perfect. If the entire nation was all vote-by-mail, it might be days before we were certain who won Tuesday's election. But the inherent delay in counting vote-by-mail ballots is a small price to pay for a free and fair election.

What Went Wrong with Republican Predictions

Posted by Paul Constant on Thu, Nov 8, 2012 at 10:29 AM

That Unskewed Polls Guy:

Chambers' method of "unskewing" polls involved re-weighting the sample to match what he believed the electorate would look like, in terms of party identification. He thought the electorate would lean more Republican when mainstream pollsters routinely found samples that leaned Democratic.

But as it turned out, the pollsters were right — self-identified Democrats outnumbered Republicans by 6% in election exit polls.

"I think it was much more in the Democratic direction than most people predicted," Chambers said. "But those assumptions — my assumptions — were wrong."

Dick Morris:

The key reason for my bum prediction is that I mistakenly believed that the 2008 surge in black, Latino, and young voter turnout would recede in 2012 to “normal” levels. Didn’t happen. These high levels of minority and young voter participation are here to stay. And, with them, a permanent reshaping of our nation’s politics.

Glad to see these schmucks owning up to their errors. Has Karl Rove pulled his thumb out of his mouth long enough to apologize for his election night snit-fit yet?

Who Were the Biggest Losers?

Posted by Eli Sanders on Thu, Nov 8, 2012 at 9:59 AM

The rich guys who, emboldened by Citizens United, tried to buy the election for Romney and other conservatives:

At the private air terminal at Logan Airport in Boston early Wednesday, men in unwrinkled suits sank into plush leather chairs as they waited to board Gulfstream jets, trading consolations over Mitt Romney’s loss the day before.

“All I can say is the American people have spoken,” said Kenneth Langone, the founder of Home Depot and one of Mr. Romney’s top fund-raisers, briskly plucking off his hat and settling into a couch.

The biggest single donor in political history, the casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson, mingled with other Romney backers at a postelection breakfast, fresh off a large gamble gone bad. Of the eight candidates he supported with tens of millions of dollars in contributions to “super PACs,” none were victorious on Tuesday.


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Snaps from Last Night's Mercury Election Partayyyy!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 3:14 PM

Here are just a few pics from the awesome time had by all at the Mercury Election Night Wing-a-ding-ding party at the Doug Fir!


More pics (along with snarky commentary) after the jump!

Continue reading »

What Would Republicans Do to Not Vote for Chris Christie?

Posted by Paul Constant on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 2:59 PM

Okay, okay: I'm just going to put up one more schadenfreude post and then I promise it's back to work. Over at The Corner, John J. Miller writes, "So, it’s pretty clear that Chris Christie won’t be the GOP nominee in 2016, right?"

What follows in the comments is an amazing display of conservative self-torture one-upmanship. Seriously, it's like a masturbatory, conservative 50 Shades of Grey:

I'd rather vote Ron Paul, and I think Ron Paul is a loon. I'd rather walk through fire. I'd rather not eat for two weeks. I'd rather go skydiving without a parachute.

Yes. Yes I would vote for Ron Paul before Christie too. In fact, I would walk through that fire with you to vote for Paul before I supported Christie.

I would carry the two of you on my back through burning broken glass for this exercise.

To add to the totally justified hyperbole: I would rather nail my hand to a burning building than vote for Christie.

Bill O'Reilly Mourns the Death of the Privileged White Majority

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 2:29 PM

I have never seen Fox News so sad as when Bill O'Reilly told them the (partial) truth. That he and everyone who works for and watches Fox News are now in the MINORITY. While he weirdly categorizes Obama supporters as people "who want things"—as opposed to Republicans who never want anything ever (they're so austere with their wealth!)—when Bill speaks, you can almost hear the walls and ceiling of the Fox studio collapsing into an irreparable state of gloom and despair.


When Obama Won, the South Shook Itself Awake, Tried to Rise Again, and Embarrassed the Hell Out of Itself

Posted by Paul Constant on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 1:44 PM

Gawker says a bunch of students from University of Mississippi got together to riot when President Obama won reelection:

Local media reports that "hundreds of Ole Miss students exchanged racial epithets and violent, politicized chants" across campus. As many as 400 students are said to have participated. There are also reports that several students were arrested during the protest, though none have been officially charged. There were mixed reports about whether or not rocks were thrown as well.

Ole Miss has apologized.

Shrieking White-Hot Sphere of Pure Rage In 2016

Posted by Erik Henriksen on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 1:14 PM

After Obama Victory, Shrieking White-Hot Sphere Of Pure Rage Early GOP Front-Runner For 2016

Via the Onion, which has yet again proven to be the best place to go for eerily accurate post-election analysis.


14,660 Portlanders Wrote In Their Choice for Mayor

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 12:14 PM

The Halesees, announcing victory last night.
  • The Halesees, announcing victory last night.
It looks like Denis wasn't the only person who wanted to send Charlie Hales a message by writing in someone for the mayor's race. As I noted this morning, 7.7 percent of voting Portlanders wrote in someone for mayor. That's 14,660 people.

I was interested in how that compares to other recent Portland elections, so I looked up the history. This year's write-in number is huge compared to 2008, when in the primary election 92 percent of Portlanders voted for either Sam Adams and Sho Dozono (remember him?) and only .34 percent of voters wrote in a candidate. In 2004, between Jim Francesconi and Tom Potter, only 2,584 people (.94 percent) of the electorate wrote in their choice.

The closest parallel is probably from 2000, when only 50.25 percent of people voted for Vera Katz in the primary. Then, 20,297 people expressed their distaste for the candidate during the November election by writing in an alternative. That's a bigger write-in vote than when Katz was elected in 1996, when five percent of voters (11,030) wrote in an alternative during the November election.

Still 14,660 people who don't want to mark their ballot for Charlie Hales or Jefferson. He may have won the election, but the results hardly give Hales a mandate.

Next on the agenda: Getting the list of who was written in from the election's office... UPDATE: The Multnomah County Elections office doesn't record the write-in candidates for races unless they get more votes than a candidate, because it would cost a lot of money. Sad news. But, Elections Spokesman Eric Sample looked through a small sample of ballots to see who was written in: "The name I saw that was the most common was Eileen Brady and then Scott Fernandez, who I believe was mounting a write-in campaign, and then typically Sam Adams or Carrie Brownstein, the Portlandia person."

Sarah Palin Is Concerned

Posted by Erik Henriksen on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 11:14 AM

Last week I finally got around to watching Game Change, the HBO TV movie about the McCain campaign's choice to go with Sarah Palin as their vice presidential nominee. It was fun, if cartoony; Julianne Moore's fantastic as a way-out-of-her-depth Palin, and Ed Harris' McCain is who I wish McCain had actually been when he was running. As I was watching, I kept thinking how far Moore had pushed her version of Palin into parody—that voice, that confusion, that tone—but no: Turns out I'd just forgotten that that's really how Palin comes across. After four years of being largely Palin-less, it was kind of remarkable to see her pop up on Fox News last night, befuddled and "disappointed" with how the votes were coming in. I post this now not to be a dick and all, "Ha ha, Obama won, everyone on Fox News is an idiot" (there are plenty of other posts doing that), but just to say... weird. Hey guys, remember when there was a chance Palin might have been vice president? Remember how close that was? And doesn't watching this make you feel even better about last night?

The Movie was Okay, but Nate Silver Spoiled the Ending

Posted by Alex Falcone on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 10:44 AM

Election night used to be fun. I'd sit down with some pop corn and watch the votes roll in. Chuck Todd would be touching his touchy-touch board, NBC would be painting their Ice Rink Of Divisiveness, and people and holograms would finally be working together for the greater good.

It was fun! Knuckles were enwhitened, nails were bitten, and eventually, one team won and the other lost and everybody high-fived and said "good game."

It's way less fun to know a week out that Mitt Romney had a snowball's chance in Mormon Hell Planet of winning. While I was relieved to know everything worked out in the end, I still felt like the kid who found his Christmas presents in his parents' closet: I was smug for figuring it out, but bitter about having nothing to look forward to.

Nate Silver ruined ElectionChristmas for me by using his magic powers to tell America it's future.

Which one of these did we have to wait all day Tuesday to see and which one did the wizard create days ago?
  • Which one of these did we have to wait all day Tuesday to see and which one did the wizard create days ago?

On election night I was sitting in comedy club under a sports bar and I heard cheers coming from upstairs. "Surely," I thought, "they must have finally read Silver's column from last Friday." But no! As the dimly lit bar echoed with chants of "Bronco Bama *clap clap clap clap clap*" I slowly realized this wasn't feigned surprise. These ignorant wretches were genuinely excited to learn the outcome!

I envy those blissful party goers. They walk around oblivious to what the Election Oracle has preordained for all of us. But since I lack the self control to leave the presents in the closet (or the New York Times' blog un-refreshed), I think we must burn Nate Silver for witchcraft. He won't be surprised. He predicted it months ago.

NOM's Sad Silver Lining

Posted by Dan Savage on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 10:29 AM

The National Organization for Marriage got its hateful, bigoted ass handed to it last night—NOM spent millions and in a tweet that has since been disappeared NOM's president Brian Brown predicted that they would win all four marriage measures—but Brown is claiming a silver lining: the defeat of two pro-gay-marriage GOP state senators in New York state. Both lost to Democrats and Democrats may take control of the upper chamber of the New York state legislature as a result.

Um… this is NOM's silver lining? Don't know yet if last night's winning Dems in New York state oppose marriage equality or not. But it's a measure of NOM's desperation that they're out there trying to spin Democrats taking control of New York state senate as some sort of face-saving win. Unless Brian Brown would have us believe that voters in New York retaliated against pro-gay state senators… by electing state senators who are likelier to be even more pro-gay. Because awarding control of the NY state senate to the party of the governor who pushed gay marriage through that same state senate strikes a blow against gay marriage.

Does not compute. Does not compute.

"Soon America Is Going to Suck for All of Us"

Posted by Paul Constant on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 9:59 AM

It's time for our quadrennial sampling of schadenfreude by visiting conservative magazine National Review's Corner blog. Let's start with the big names!

Maggie Gallagher says: "Either we figure out how to win a much larger share of the Latino vote or the conservative movement could be over."

Here's Grover Norquist, looking for a silver lining: "The Republican House was reelected after not just touching but fondling the 'third rail of American politics.'" One commenter argued Norquist's optimism by saying, "This election should demonstrate once and for all that a platform exclusively emphasizing fiscal conservatism is insufficient to win the presidency."

Stanley Kurtz has a great idea: "Barack Obama has won reelection. Will America now lose its distinct characteristics and be transformed into a Euro-style welfare state? Quite possibly, yet there remains one way out. At this point, only a sweeping new grassroots rebellion on the model of the Tea Party could change things." Yeah! Whatever happened to that Tea Party, anyway? They had a bunch of great candidates, like Rick Perry and Rick Santorum and Michele Bachmann. Whatever happened to those guys?

And here are some random samplings of comments to enjoy:

I've never been pessimistic about America. Never. I am now. I think this country is done. We are cooked. We just elected an empirically terrible president, solely based on race...America is over.

Are we doomed to permanent Democratic Rule??

We are done. The country s going the way of Rome. We simply can't last with the takers taking more than the makers can make. America has failed. We have elected a totally failed leader. A man of zero accomplishments, out of grievance.

This absolute joke of a president just gave a joke of a speech, and trotted out the old red nd blue states garbage again. Puke.

I really believe this is the end of America. Today? No. But there are too many takers now, not enough makers. I think the 47% is probably the 49% now...

Libs out there you won the day rejoice while you can. Soon America is going to suck for all of us and for once, you won't be able to blame us.
So enjoy the victory will its taste is still sweet and savory.


Local Portland and Oregon 2012 Election Results

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 9:39 AM

Today is National Try Not to Be Smug Day, but it's a little hard when we've got the first openly gay female senator, support for same-sex marriage, and Obama all of a sudden saying things about "a warming planet." Anyway, we all know the outcome of the presidential election and the mayor's race, but here's the rundown on the rest of the campaigns in Oregon.

First of all, 81 percent of the state voted, but Multnomah County had the second-lowest turnout in the state: 53 percent now the updated results show that 80 percent of Multnomah County voted! Woo! The state went 53 percent for Obama and 7.7 percent of people wrote in a mayor in the Portland election—that's 14,660 people who didn't want to vote for Charlie Hales or Jefferson Smith.

Jefferson Smiths election party last night featured this bouncy castle and ACTUAL PUPPIES!
  • Jefferson Smiths election party last night featured this bouncy castle and ACTUAL PUPPIES!

Oregon Secretary of State Kate Brown was reelected with 50.7 percent to 44 percent over Republican challenger Knute Buehler in a tough race and Democrats also kept their positions as State Treasurer (Ted Wheeler), Attorney General (Ellen Rosenblum), and Labor Commissioner (Brad Avakian).

Democrats are expected to take a majority in the Oregon House (which was evenly split last session) and maintain their majority in the Senate.

So State Republican Party chair Allen Alley's prediction at the Republican election shindig last night that Oregon would be the "first red state on the West Coast": Not so accurate.

As for measures, the real estate transfer tax ban passed and the estate tax ban failed. No surprise, but the gillnetting ban and pro-casino measure also failed. Marijuana legalization Measure 80 failed by a surprisingly slim margin—nine percent—seeing as there wasn't a real, professional campaign staged for the plan.

Locally, Amanda Fritz won the city council seat race by a surprisingly wide margin—18 percent.

The local school bond passed, as did the arts tax. The tweaks to the police and firefighter pension systems also won.

Vancouver voted rejected a light-rail funding measure, which leaves Columbia River Crossing funding in question.

You can view the Oregon election results here and county results here!

What Does Marijuana Legalization Actually Mean For Washington?

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Wed, Nov 7, 2012 at 9:06 AM


While I was eating jalapeno poppers in a basement on SE 82nd with Oregon's Measure 80 crew last night, Washington's pot legalization campaign was actually declaring victory.

So now marijuana is legal in Washington state. But what will the practical effects of Initiative 502 be?

I spoke this morning with campaign director Alison Holcomb, who spelled out what will happen over the next year in Washington. Thirty days from now, it will be officially legal to possess marijuana in Washington if you're over 21. You can have up to one ounce of marijuana bud, one pound of marijuana "solids" (like brownies!), or 72 ounces of marijuana distilled in liquid. Twelve months from now, the state will have gone through a rule-making process to determine what the specific rules around growing, selling, and licensing marijuana distributors in the state should be. The process, a collaboration between the state's liquor control board and departments of health and agriculture, won't result in dispensaries until December 2013 at the earliest.

It's important to note that, under the measure, manufacture and delivery of marijuana is still a crime. So is growing your own at home, unless you're a medical marijuana cardholder. The laws around consumption of marijuana in public mirror the laws around consumption of liquor and cigarettes—you can't smoke pot in public if anyone can tell it's pot (so eating a pot brownie is okay) and you also can't smoke it indoors in places where you can't smoke cigarettes (so no lighting up in Vancouver bars).

Over the next year, it's possible that the feds could swoop in and start cracking down on marijuana use in the state, since its possession still remains a federal crime. But Holcomb is hopeful that won't happen. In 2010, Attorney General Eric Holder strongly discouraged California from passing pro-pot Proposition 16. This time around, he was silent on any state's measure. "What we're hoping for is that we'll have a productive conversation with the feds," says Holcomb.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

It's the Mercury's Election 2012 Live Blog

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Tue, Nov 6, 2012 at 7:17 PM

Welcome to the Blogtown Election Vulture's Lair! In this post, we'll be following races both near (mayor? city council? legal grass?) and far away (Barry-O vs. Willard the Mittens, gay marriage across the Columbia?). The latest updates start at the top of the page! For up to the second news and results follow us on the Twitter @portlandmercury or look for our friends at #ORelection or #pdxvotes.

Mercury 1st Election Battalion (nickname: Nightmare Warriors)

9:20 There's still an hourlong line to cast ballots in Multnomah County. But the last guy in line? He's Mark Conneughon. He was excited to vote against Charlie Hales and didn't even know who Hales was running against—someone named "Christopher"? Told Hales won going away, he said "It doesn't matter. Every vote counts." (SM)

9:14 Okay, so not all the numbers are yet in, but City Commissioner Amanda Fritzm cautious as ever, told the Mercury she feels pretty comfortable calling the results in her favor. So how will a second term by Fritz differ from her first term? Fritz says she’s going to stick to her roots, and regardless of this win, she maintains she’s not a career politician.

“People asked me a year into my first term if I was going to run again,” says Fritz. “And I was like, ‘Don’t you want to see if I’m doing a good job first?’ It wasn’t until the spring of last year that I said ‘Yeah, I’m doing a good job. I want to run again.’”

So what will change? For starters, Fritz says she wants a bureau with trucks. Apparently her bureaus aren’t big enough for trucks, and trucks are like a status thing in the sordid world of city hall. And beyond that Fritz hopes to bring back the now-defunct publicly funded campaign-financing program that she used to get elected in 2008. She says, so other would-be citizen politicians like herself don’t have to blow through their savings like she did during this campaign. (NG)

“That starts tomorrow,” says Fritz about getting the program back. She says she hopes to get a citizen initiative on the ballot by 2014. “My opponent said some pretty mean things and she outspent me, and that was scary because traditionally whoever has the big money endorsements wins, but I just held fast. But most people wouldn’t have the capacity to save their pay checks for the last four years and put into their campaign, which is what I did.”

As to those property taxes she still has to pay, Fritz says she’s working on it.

9:12 Even if Mary Nolan had won her campaign for Portland City Council (she conceded to incumbent Amanda Fritz 45 minutes ago), she'd still have the same plans for tomorrow: A hike in the Columbia River Gorge.

Few can fault Nolan. As to next week, or beyond, Nolan says she doesn't have any specific plans.

"I put a lot of energy into my professional life and volunteer work," Nolan says, adding that she hopes to apply that energy where it's most needed in the city. Fritz and Mayor-elect Charlie Hales, she says, "Face some pretty big challenges."

These challenges include disparities across demographics, concerns with infrastructure, environmental problems and relationships with suburban communities, Nolan says.

"I wish them all well," she says of local electeds.

"We were working for a different outcome, but we ran a campaign that we are extremely proud of," she says. "The stuff that really matters is getting president Obama re-elected, getting marriage equality in Maine and getting Elizabeth Warren elected to the Senate. Our country can be safe for the next four years."

Nolan stressed that her volunteers will keep working for progressive leadership in Portland.

"These folks are not just working for me," she says. (BL)

9:09 "I'm Jefferson Smith, and until about twenty minutes ago I was running for mayor." I wondered if Smith had actually prepared two speeches for the evening, whether or not there was a folded-up victory speech next to the inevitable concession speech that he just now gave. Smith's speech, probably wisely, emphasized his appreciation for his volunteers and how he intended to still stay involved (somehow) with Portland policy.

Presiding over a potentially dejected audience, Smith did his best to sound like a man giving a college commencement speech. He mentioned East Portland, the Columbia River Crossing, and coal more than once, and punctuated each of the issues with the litany "keep moving forward." Smith did his best to try to energize the crowd, emphasizing that several organizers would be circulating about offering opportunities to volunteer on issues like East Portland.

Smith is certainly and impassioned orator. He actually got the crowd to join him in his chant of "keep moving forward" toward the end of the speech. The chant took on an almost church-like quality, a hymn for people who had felt idealism, but had poured it into an imperfect vessel.

Before he disappeared behind a curtain, Smith offered an inkling of his future plans. "A lot of people have asked me what's next," he said, "I'm going to take a nap." (JS)

8:52 "Thank you all," Hales says, beaming. "The elections are finally over! Now it's time to get to the main job of running the city. I want you to be as proud as your city leadership as you are of Portland. My goal is to minimize drama and maximize results!"

Hales adds that he just got a call from Jefferson Smith, who said kind things. Hales says kind things about him, too, and throws Eileen Brady into the pot. Back to the point.

"I want to refocus city on it's basic services. I'm not going to rest until we have quality schools in every neighborhood." CHEERS. "I want a police bureau that works with the community." CHEERS. "I'm ready to pick up the tools and begin." CHEERS ALSO QUESTIONABLE THOUGHTS.

Shortly off stage, Hales says he "feels great. A little dazzled, but great. I'm going to enjoy myself tonight with the people that brought me here."

And what about the national biz? "Hales: "Is Obama still ahead?" (Clasps hands in prayer) "Oh I hope he gets it. Portland will be okay regardless of who's in charge at the federal level, but having a partner in the President would be wonderful." (AZ)

8:47 So far, in early returns, Democrats are up in Oregon state races! Secretary of State Kate Brown is edging Knute Buehler by seven points, and Brad Avakian is up over Bruce Starr by 7, in the labor commissioner's race, too. Let's call it for Ted Wheeler and Ellen Rosenblum. Richard Baldwin is barely ahead of Nena Cook in the nonpartisan State Supreme Court race. We'd have those results for ya a lot sooner, except Brown's office has a terribly slow website. Ahem. (DT)

8:39 State measures roundup! The real estate transfer tax ban has passed. Because voters are stupid and real estate interests are terrible. Pot is up 15 points... in Multnomah County. Casinos are obviously losing. But we lost the corporate kicker—yay schools! And the estate tax has not been done away with. (DT)

8:30 The mood is increasingly anxious at the Republican party. Everyone is checking their phones, hoping for a different result. But no, even FOX news has called the election for Obama. "I don't understand!" says a woman. "It's not even over yet!" Someone groans loudly.

I stand up front chatting with some Log Cabin Republicans, who remind me that Obama wasn't in support of same-sex marriage, either, until a few months ago. "We have our work cut out for us," says Oregon Log Cabin President James Owens, who is wearing the best tie in the house (skinny, plaid). "We'll be making the Republican party more inclusive, which will be making a better Republican party in the future." (SM)

8:25 Mary Nolan just effectively conceded her campaign for Portland City Council to Amanda Fritz, the incumbent commissioner.

She told volunteers that the early numbers showed it was unlikely she'd be victorious barring a miracle. Nolan's finance director reassured the crowd by letting them know "the bar is still here. The food is still here."

Within moments of Mary's announcement that she would soon call to congratulate Fritz, CBS News made its call for Obama's victory. The news picked up the crowd considerably. (BL)

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Classic "Rock the Vote!" Vids

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Tue, Nov 6, 2012 at 2:14 PM

Since 1990, Rock the Vote has registered over 5 million young people—which is almost as astounding as these classic Rock the Vote videos that rocked MTV over the years. Take it away, Coolio!

Let's get artsy, Robert Downey, Jr. and Sara Jessica Parker!

And of course, the classic Rock the Vote vid: Madonna, and her two off-key gay friends.

Many more fun videos here!

A Bipartisan Post About Election Day Panic

Posted by Paul Constant on Tue, Nov 6, 2012 at 1:44 PM

Democrats: Are you super-scared about voter fraud yet? Here, via Wonkette, is a bit of terrifying voter fraud porn that's circulating the internet this morning showing a voting machine that refuses to let you vote for President Obama:

It's probably just a busted touch screen, but I bet some of you are still hyperventilating!

Republicans: Are you super-scared about black people yet? Here, also via Wonkette, is a bit of scary Fox News video showing a black guy standing in front of a polling place, opening doors for people and wishing them a good morning. Terrifying footage below:

Black people holding doors open for white people? What's next—race war?

The Mercury's Election Night Party! TONIGHT!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Tue, Nov 6, 2012 at 1:29 PM

Face it, you're too amped up to go home and watch election results alone! So come to the FREE Mercury Election Night Wing-a-ding-ding (Party) tonight at the Doug Fir! Here is what you'll get:

Live election coverage on the big screen!
Smarty-pants analysis from smarty-pants Steve Novick!
Games, prizes, party-favors, and a "Mormon Magic Underpants" fashion show!
Comedy from Ian Karmel!
Especially special special guests!
Dancey dance music from DJ Gregarious!
Drink specials!
Binders full of women!
And me, your host, Wm. Steven Humphrey!

Trust me, it's gonna get wild, y'all—SO DON'T MISS IT!

Mercury's Election Night Wing-a-Ding-Ding (Party)
TONIGHT: Tuesday, Nov 6
Doors at 6 pm, Entertainment at 8 pm
Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside


Most Popular I, Anonymous Best of the Merc

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