19 January 2009

Enjoy Your One Term As Mayor, Sam. (Updated x6)

1919.(NB: updated at 0315 with some stylistic polishing and current events)

A Portland political moment, if you please.

When cynicism like this rears its head time and time again, you can see why people want to check out (via):

Until today I have not discussed the true nature of the relationship with anyone. Not my friends, family, staff or colleagues on the council. I have apologized to Beau Breedlove for asking him to lie for me. I want to apologize to my colleagues for my dishonesty and especially to the people of Portland for my dishonesty. I should have been truthful from the beginning.

Sure. Well, it is always easier to ask forgiveness than permission, isn't it?

We can argue about whether Sam's policies for the City are crap or not until the cows come home to roost, but we can't argue about how bad that looks.

I could be wrong. I've tried a little political blogging; even though I know very well inside me what I care but sometimes, though I read long and think as deeply as my mediocre mind will let me, sometimes I have astoundingly little depth.

I was proud to have voted for Sam; I was proud to have helped put someone who looked progressive in the Mayoral seat; I was kind of smug about being part of a city that had the courage to elect a mayor who is openly gay, because he looked like someone who could do the job (of course, it was hard to lose, running against Sho ... who may have been a wonderful guy but clearly wasn't ready and had a campaign that showed it) and we spent little or no time discussing that he in fact was teh gay.

Now? Why did I ever bother? Why should anyone? Maybe the ones who checked out of the process had a point ... That's what I thought when I first heard it, a quickly-delivered one-line news item at a radio news-break. But my political self will get over it; I'm still, for all the naïvete inherent, the sort that believes that for every politician who lied in order to save his career there's one who hasn't completely sold his soul out.

I, for what its worth, as a citizen of Portland and someone who voted for you, accept your apology. That doesn't repair my damaged trust, but I do accept your apology.

I cryed a lot and died a lot inside today.

Enjoy your term as Mayor, Sam. You've earned it, sure enough.

Hell of a way to spend Inauguration Eve.

Update 1–0315, 20 Jan 08: There's a big discussion on at Bogdanski's Place, a good deal of it predictable, with some surprises, including one person who's not only calling for a Sam Adams recall ... he's even created a yahoo.com email contact address for it.

Update 2–0317, 20 Jan 08: Based on Google image hits to the baseball card image alone I already have more than three times the number of hits on this blog than I usually have at this time of day. This story's getting big interest.

Update 3–0043, 21 Jan 08: I'm still wishing you a fruitful single-term as Portland's Mayor, but if these guys get their way, you won't even have that. Oh, they can't do anything for six months, but after that ... they'll come gunning for you. And six months is plenty of time to plow the ground.

Update 4–1048, 21 Jan 08: I guess we could have seen this one coming: Turns out that Sam was lying about being Breedlove's mentor too, saith The Big O:

Adams also admitted that he never had a true mentoring relationship with the young man. Breedlove asked Adams for advice on being gay in the political arena, but Adams now says that was originally a pretext for meeting.

"There was no proposition, but I felt there was some interest," Adams said of their initial meetings. "Part of the lie was to play up the mentoring."

The issue of Adams' relationship with Breedlove first arose publicly in fall 2007 when Adams and City Commissioner Randy Leonard accused another potential mayoral candidate of spreading rumors that Adams had sex with a minor, a crime under Oregon law. At the time, Adams angrily denied that he and Breedlove were ever anything more than mentor and protege.

On Monday, Adams admitted that he and Breedlove had sex several times in the summer of 2005 -- a few weeks after Breedlove reached the age of legal consent. Adams said he lied about the relationship and asked Breedlove to lie because he didn't think voters would believe they waited until after the young man's birthday to become intimate.

And it just gets better and better. Also reported by The Big O today was this:

Oregon Attorney General John Kroger will lead an investigation into the conduct of Portland Mayor Sam Adams who has admitted he had a sexual relationship with an 18-year-old he met in 2005.Kroger agreed to conduct the inquiry after being asked to do so by Portland Police Chief Rosie Sizer and Multnomah County District Attorney Michael Schrunk, The Oregonian learned this morning. Details about the inquiry -- specifically what Kroger will look into -- were not immediately available.

Sam was saying how he was not going to resign. Maybe he should reconsider that, since now TBO is calling for the Mayor to resign (as is the PTrib, in case anyone's still reading it)

Update 5–1107, 21 Jan 08: Before this one slips away, we have to mention something that's leaving people wondering if whatever happens to a Portland City Commissioner is introduced in the A/C at City Hall or that pure, sweet Bull Run water. As reported by the WW, Amanda Fritz To City: Problem? We Don't See Any Problem:

City Commissioner Amanda Fritz says she has no idea why WW felt compelled yesterday to publish this story about Mayor Sam Adams confessing to telling a lie about his sexual relationship with 18-year-old Beau Breedlove.

Fritz got up at Adams' press conference this afternoon (more on his comments in a bit) to raise questions about WW's timing with our publication of the piece on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and the day before Barack Obama was inaugurated.

"I cannot think of a compelling public purpose" for publishing this story yesterday, Fritz said.

Quite frankly we wonder about the timing of that too. But no compelling purpose? There was a compelling purpose in revealing the story back when it was still fresh. As the 70s philosophress Stevie Nicks once opined, "A wound gets worse when it's treated with neglect". And eventually the wound has to be treated. If not now, when, we ask?

Update 6–1120, 21 Jan 08: We can also not sally forth with this without referencing what's becoming The Strange Case Of Amy Ruiz. We are fans of the Portland Mercury, and ardent followers of the "Hall Monitor" column, where the PMerc's City Hall reporter shared news and notes about the Student Council Portland City Commission's weekly doings. She took over the column about a year (or maybe a little more) back after Scott Davis left the paper to go work down in Snailem for the governor.

Up until earlier last year, Amy was chasing down the story of Sam Adams and Beau Breedlove. And then she hit a dead end. And then she got hired onto Sam's staff as a Sustainable Development Policy Advisor at $55,000 a year (which, we understand, is about 1/3 again more than what she made as a PMerc reporter). There has been considerable chatter over the perception of Amy being hired over people who may have been more qualified (PMerc's Blogtown blog has germane postings here, here, and here which you should really really read), and right now, Amy's kind of starting to look all collateral-damage-y.

Downside? We haven't seen the "Hall Monitor" column lately. It was pretty good.

ALSO: Our favorite expat Brit who won't shut his bleeding gob has sequenced all the PMerc's coverage in his blog here.

Update 7–1407, 21 Jan 08: Now, Portland's signature gay publication Just Out has called for the Mayor's resig, and nails it absolutely:

Adams’ apology of yesterday, including specific reference to the gay
community, while sincere, is not enough. The bond of trust and
confidence has been broken. Adams has previously stated his hope that
gay and lesbian youth might one day look to him as a role model and
example. His own actions have now rendered this implausible.

Adams must resign his seat as Portland’s mayor.

Read all about it here.

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , ,

Powered by ScribeFire.

No comments: