Portland mayoral candidates spar in debate

Portland mayoral candidates spar in debate

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by KGW.com Staff

kgw.com

Posted on September 26, 2012 at 11:42 AM

Updated Wednesday, Sep 26 at 2:42 PM

PORTLAND - Both Charlie Hales and Jefferson Smith have vowed to run a campaign without personal attacks.

In addition to discussing light rail and the Columbia River Crossing Wednesday at the debate at the Embassy Suites in Northeast Portland, the two laid out their priorities for city government.

“Portland’s at a crossroads, there’s a pretty daunting list,”Hales said, adding that critical economic, transportation and education problems faced the city.

The campaign was about “how do we reduce unemployment … improve government services," Smith said adding "change is going to require change.”

The two exchanged words over a recent flyer.

Smith was accused of having supporters distributing a flyer saying negative things about Hales, which Smith denied.

“We didn’t do it,” Smith said. “I will ask anybody watching not to do this kind of thing.”

Smith campaign spokesman Geoff Surgerman said the flyer was not officially endorsed or distributed by the campaign. It was a letter from a woman upset over a recent Oregonian editorial that was shared with others in the campaign, he said.   

Smith and Hales also sparred over supporters taking illicit video of each other at a Labor Day picnic.

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