Talk about free advertising just before next month's election: Backers of measures to limit legislators' terms and to reform campaign finance got a gift from The Oregonian's Hawaii-gate series last week when the paper reported that veteran lawmakers neglected to report Hawaiian junkets sponsored by the lightly taxed and always generous beer industry.

Ignore Republican gubernatorial challenger Ron Saxton's Mona Lisa smile in this photo. With a month until the Nov. 7 election, polls show him closing in on incumbent Democratic Gov. Ted Kulongoski, and fundraising reports show he's collected more than twice as much as the guv.

Portland City Commissioner Randy Leonard earned himself some "green" karma (and perhaps some votes from enviros down the line). Leonard manages the city Water Bureau, which last week switched its 84-vehicle fleet to a 99-percent biodiesel blend—the largest fleet in the country to do so.


The Oregon congressional delegation's plan to protect tens of thousands of wilderness acres on Mount Hood has itself become an endangered species. Federal officials last week released a report critical of a land swap that's key to the idea, and then the Bush administration said it wouldn't back the plan.

A weird weekend for our usually placid city neighbor to the north. First, cops in Vancouver blamed a fatal shooting between two men on a dispute that started between them on a CB radio. Then, on Sunday morning, a Vancouver police officer shot and killed a man who pointed a toy gun at him behind a Wal-Mart.

And it was an embarrassing stretch for pit bulls. Last week three of the supposedly fearsome dogs failed to show any aggression toward an intruder in a Portland house (leaving the homeowner to corner the trespasser until cops arrived). And another pit bull is believed to have mauled a seal pup on the Oregon Coast. At least our beach balls are safe.