We have a doctor - let's keep the nurse. Jack Bog's Blog noted today that Mary Nolan has lined up more than enough campaign money to crush incumbent commissioner Amanda Fritz. Frankly, I cannot name one positive achievement by the commissioner - not that there isn't. The Office of Equity is not a positive achievement and is a rather politically immature venture.
But I believe I know what she isn't. She isn't unethical. She isn't driven (too much) by self-interests. I believe that she honestly wants to do what is right for all Portlanders. She is maturing politically. And she is willing to pony up $25 grand or so of her personal funds to stay put.
She hasn't indicated that she is or would ever be aligned with the urban renewal, Max, Streetcar, developer crowd like Nolan's supporters and campaign contributors noted in Jack's post - "Mark Edlen, Don Mazziotti, Vic Rhodes, Rick Gustafson, even a cool grand from Little Lord Paulson in his Dunthorpe manor!" And that is more than enough for me to stay with Fritz.
Arguably Portland politics is governed too much by monied interests and those seeking to "develop" Portland with other's money, i.. e., property tax revenue and money that should be used for education, etc. They seek to "develop" in their self-interests and in their self image. And what makes that all the much worst is that candidates like Mary Nolan don't have to spend one penny of their own money.
While I was not supportive of Portland's version of public campaign financing - this particular campaign highlights the errors of political campaign financing. It speaks loudly about the need to offer a means by which ordinary citizens who are ethical and haven't yet been corrupted by politics to serve in a public capacity such as commissioner.
Although I realize that this is not a ringing endorsement - but given the alternative I would rather have Amanda Fritz than any other candidate for Portland's open positions, including the mayor's. Even given the present composition of the city council - I would pick her over the present office holders.
Portland needs leadership that addresses the needs of Portlanders not corporate and developer interests.