Stacey Dycus, the political consultant who guided State Rep. Jefferson Smith (D-Portland) to a stronger than expected finish in the May mayoral primary, is moving on, Dycus tells WW.
Dycus ran an effective, low-budget campaign for Smith that relied on extensive volunteer canvassing and DIY television ads. For months, polls showed Smith a distant third but in the campaign's final couple of weeks, he surged and one-time front runner Eileen Brady faded. Smith got 50 percent more votes than Brady, although she outspent him by more than a two-to-one margin. The final results showed former City Commissioner Charlie Hales with 37 percent of the primary vote; Smith with 33 percent and Brady, 22 percent.
A longtime associate of the late State Treasurer Ben Westlund, Dycus enjoyed a big success in 2010, when she helped former Hillsboro mayor Tom Hughes beat far better-funded rival Bob Stacey in the Metro Council President's race.
Smith's opponent in the November mayoral run-off, Hales, previously fired all but one of his campaign staff.
Smith says he's sorry to see Dycus go. "She made the decision," Smith told WW. "I said, 'Are you sure?' She did a fantastic job for us."
Smith says the rest of his staff remains intact, and he is considering various options for replacing Dycus.
For her part, Dycus says she'll spend a few days at her Bend home resting up and then hopes to focus on issue work, rather than candidate campaigns, in the fall.