One of the strangest stories of the 2010 election cycle involved Chael Sonnen, a world-class ultimate fighter from West Linn who filed to run for an open Oregon House seat in district 37 (West Linn and parts of Clackamas County).
Sonnen who was simultaneously training for a world championship fight and running for office, an unusual combination in Oregon politics, earned unwanted publicity and Rogue of the Week honors when he made some incendiary comments on Twitter regarding his August 2010 opponent, Brazilian Anderson Silva, referring to Silva and his pals as a "pygmy tribe of savages."
In June 2010, Sonnen mysteriously quit the House race. Silva defeated him in August—although Sonnen performed far better than pre-fight predictions—and then in 2011, federal authorities convicted Sonnen of money laundering related to some shady real estate dealings.
Now, Sonnen is scheduled for a re-match with Silva for another world middle-weight championship bout July 7 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on the Ultimate Fighting Championship 148 card.
For those who cannot get to Vegas, State Reps. Matt Wingard (R-Wilsonville) and Pat Sheehan (R-Clackamas) and House District 40 GOP candidate Steve Newgard are providing an opportunity that will probably be more fun than the usual bar or restaurant shake-down lobbyists expect this time of year.
Rather than flying to the MGM Grand, lobbyists can journey to the more intimate Milwaukie Masonic Lodge to watch the bout on pay-per-view. There will be Pendleton whiskey and food from Chael's Mean Streets Pizza in West Linn—and the opportunity for $5,000 sponsorships which come with four of the best seats in the house.