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September 14th, 2011 WW Editorial Staff | Murmurs
 

Murmurs: Jefferson Smith Throws in Hat, High Schooler Builds App, GOP Coffers are Fat

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murmurs_smith_3745Rep. Jefferson Smith
     
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  • Rep. Jefferson Smith (D-East Portland) said Tuesday he will run for mayor of Portland against former City Commissioner Charlie Hales and businesswoman  Eileen Brady. Smith, 38, is a founder of the Bus Project, a get-out-the-vote group. He grew up in Irvington and won election to the House in 2008. Smith went viral this year for a Web video “rickrolling” state lawmakers. (If you don’t know what it means, Google it). He also helped organize a series of Candidates Gone Wild events with WW. “The city of Portland should be fun. Our campaigns should be fun. They should not be war,” Smith tells WW. “We should take our work very seriously, but we should not take ourselves very seriously.”
  • The group that issued a discredited housing discrimination audit painting two-thirds of Portland landlords as biased has asked an outside expert to review its practices. The Fair Housing Council of Oregon has hired Anne Houghtaling, former director of investigations and enforcement for the National Fair Housing Alliance, to conduct the review. Records released under WW’s requests showed the audit was misleading, withheld evidence and exaggerated claims of discrimination. The Fair Housing Council will launch the review, says Executive Director Moloy Good, “to assure that our future work is of the highest quality and integrity.”
  • A Bend orthopedic surgeon running for secretary of state is serious about raising big campaign money. Dr. Knute Buehler, a Republican, has pulled in $45,000 so far, mostly from local donors and some family members. Buehler, a former Oregon State baseball player and Rhodes Scholar, has hired fundraiser Lori Hardwick, who helped Republican Chris Dudley raise $10 million in his race for governor last year. Incumbent Secretary of State Kate Brown, a Portland Democrat, has not yet cranked up her cash machine.
  • Because nothing says “nature” like a lithium-ion battery-powered radio transmitter controlled by an advanced microprocessor and encased in electrode-layered glass and plastic: The office of City Commissioner Nick Fish last week announced a new iPhone app designed to “improve your experience” at Forest Park. The app contains 10 maps of the park’s 80 miles of trails prepared by the Forest Park Conservancy. The app’s developer: Lincoln High School senior Dylan Gattey, 17. Reached on his lunch break, Gattey says he’s a self-taught programmer who came up with the app as a class project and then approached the conservancy. Gattey is applying to Brown, MIT and Wesleyan, and thinking about a major in computer science. Find the $3.99 app at forestparkpdxapp.info.

 
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