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August 17th, 2011 WW Editorial Staff | Murmurs
 

The Cause of Michele Bachmann’s Migraines.

Ron WydenWYDEN
  • He’s not up for re-election until 2016, but U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) held a big-ticket fundraiser on Aug. 3 in Washington, D.C. The lunchtime event asked $2,500 from “co-hosts” and $5,000 from “sponsors.” The money went to Wyden for Oregon, a joint committee formed by Wyden’s Senate campaign and Holding Onto Oregon’s Priorities, a Wyden committee to help Democratic candidates. In May, Wyden canceled a scheduled appearance at a reception for his former chief of staff Josh Kardon, now a lobbyist, after WW reported that Kardon’s prospective lobbying clients would be attending. WW has now learned from federal campaign finance reports that Wyden’s campaign paid Kardon’s company, Grant Park Strategies, $32,500 this year for “strategic consulting.” Wyden spokeswoman Jennifer Hoelzer didn’t return messages. Kardon’s assistant at Tonkon Torp, the Portland law firm where he works, said he was traveling in Europe and couldn’t be reached.
  • Not so fast on fast-tracking the Columbia River Crossing. The Metro Council last week used an obscure state law for siting light-rail lines to give sweeping land-use approval to the $3.6 billion freeway project—even though light rail is 23 percent of the project’s cost (see “All Aboard!” WW, Aug. 3, 2011). The blanket approval got little attention or debate; the law Metro used limits grounds for appeals. Still, opponents say they will fight on at the state Land Use Board of Appeals. Metro did back off of one key decision: The board delayed its OK of the project’s final environmental-impact statement, saying it needed more review.
  • Monocle calls itself a “briefing on global affairs, business, culture and design.” But it’s also a big, thick and expensive magazine that loves to talk about cities. Monocle’s annual ranking of the world’s top cities has Portland in 18th place—up from 22nd last year—making it the top U.S. city. Portland edged out Honolulu (19th) and Seattle (25th). The survey looks at factors such as medical care, public transportation, climate and chain stores. That might explain why the Rose City didn’t do even better. The number of Starbucks in the No. 1 city, Helsinki: zero. Portland: 114.
  • Two more award-winning veteran journalists departed The Oregonian last week. FOODday writer Leslie Cole left after 18 years at the paper to become a communications manager for Grand Central Bakery. A spokesperson there says Cole will start after Labor Day. Phil Manzano ended his 27-year career at The O to join World Vision, an international-aid organization based in Federal Way, Wash. Manzano has been a reporter and suburban bureau chief at The O, and most recently worked as a community news Web editor. We couldn’t reach Manzano or Cole by press time.
 
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