So far, the rhetoric is predictable, the lines are being drawn, and there is a hint of mud in the air.
In the May 19, 216 Lake Oswego Review, there are several articles of note:
- Gary Stein wrote about Dave Berg's announcement last week that he is running for mayor. Last week's edition of the LO Review included a piece by Dave Berg about why he wanted to be mayor.
- Skip O'Neill wrote a commentary to refute claims made about the Council's performance for the last 3-1/2 years
- Kent Studebaker also took swipes at opponent Berg by calling his arguments "silly" and that they might be so "scary" that citizens would become fearful.
- Gerry Good wrote an article about the shortcomings of the City's 2016-17 budget that does little to address looming shortfalls and over-staffing.
Studebaker and O'Neill took umbrage with Berg's criticisms of how the City Council has performed and wasted no time firing back. As both are members of the Council Berg was talking about, and both are running for re-election, they seemed united in their battle for redemption and position.
I am always amused and dismayed that candidates keep using words like silly, scary, dangerous, frightening, crazy, and more, to incite negative feelings about their opponents. Does this tactic even work anymore, if it ever did? It's a part of campaigning, but the subtle and not-so-subtle negative references do nothing to draw distinctions between important political and quality of life issues and candidates' thoughts about governance.
Whatever words candidates choose to use, the public will be looking for answers to their own concerns about their beloved city. Which of the candidates will try the hardest to give them what they want - not in words, but in actions?
The temperature is guaranteed to only go up from here on.
Five more months to go!