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September 12th, 2012 MARTY SMITH | Dr. Know
 

Dr. Know: Blue, Blue Oregon

If Oregon is so solidly blue, why should a Portlander bother voting this year?

drknowILLUSTRATION: Hawk Krall

Oregon is a die-hard blue state—and anyway, since the conventions, Obama’s been running away with the election. So, as a Portlander, why should I bother voting? —Derpa the Sherpa

We’re not as blue as you might suppose, Derp. Sure, Portland is lousy with Che Guevara mustaches and fixed-gear bikes made out of goat cheese. But we’re still attached to a Wild West rodeo called Oregon.

Our House of Representatives is half Republican, for example, and Oregon was recently touted as flippable by GOP overlord Karl Rove. (Granted, that was before his party made the mistake of putting its convention on TV, where everybody could get a good look at Romney’s constipated eyebrows.)

Still, I’m not gonna lie to you: New York Times pollster Nate Silver puts the likelihood of Oregon deciding the presidential election at 0.2 percent. But you should still vote. Here’s why:

First of all, there’s more to elections than the presidency. Sure, eight-term Democratic Congressman Earl Blumenauer isn’t exactly sweating the challenge from—ahem—TriMet bus driver Ron Green. But there is a contested mayoral race, y’know.

Choose your side! Is it worse to be disingenuously vague about your state of residency to avoid taxes, like Charlie Hales? Or to be genuinely vague about whether you have a driver’s license because you’re kind of a spaz, like Jefferson Smith?

As it happens, I’m pulling for Charlie—if I thought we needed a mayor who can’t keep his license current, I’d have run myself. But I’m an asshole—vote, and cancel me out! Go democracy!

Plus, there’s always the chance that by voting, you can improve things for other people—marriage-minded gays, pregnant Mississippians, Afghan civilians. It’s literally the least you can do. As a lazy American, how can you say no to that?

 
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