August 23rd, 2007 5:33 pm | by Paul Leonard News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, Politics

Jefferson Smith Makes His Move

Jefferson Smith

In the latest from carpetbag central, Jefferson Smith has already fled inner Northeast Portland's House District 43 for the cozy, wide-open 47th in East Portland - the home of Speaker Jeff Merkley's soon-to-be-vacated House seat.

Speaking to WW by phone yesterday, Smith took umbrage at the "carpetbag" tag, saying that the decision to move to Parkrose in Merkley's district was due to rising house prices in Northeast, and not because his old nabe sat in safe Democrat Rep. Chip Shield's territory.

So we decided to do a little digging to get to the bottom of the skyrocketing real estate prices that ejected Smith, founder and director of the progressive Bus Project, from Northeast Portland. According to real estate database RMLS, the average Northeast home sale price in 2006 was a whopping $302,500.

But Smith's new nabe, where he says he's renting for now, isn't so much cheaper. According to Jean Burns at ReMax, a home in Parkrose averages $275,000.

So will Smith run? All indications say yes—but the man himself isn't quite ready to say so.

"I'm not going to make an announcement until all our ducks are in a row," said Smith.
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