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Betting on the Bulletin 

Stop the presses; the Bend Bulletin just endorsed Chris Telfer. Wow, I never saw that coming.

But seriously, I know a lot of locals consider The Bulletin's editorial board to be a bunch of ill-informed, predictable, and intellectually dishonest knuckleheads who do little more than carry water for the local builders, developers and the Republican Party. But I'm not sure I buy it. In fact, I think all The Bulletin's editorial positions and endorsements are the result of a long, hotly debated, deliberative process. Because if they weren't, then some clown like me could sit down several weeks before the election and, with great certainty, make a list of who will eventually receive that paper's backing. But because The Bulletin has no bias, and my name isn't Nostradamus, I could never do such a thing.

But maybe I should try, ya know, just to prove my point. Maybe I should make a list of all the candidates the Bulletin would simply have to endorse if they were in fact surrogates for the development community and the Republican Party. I think I will.

So let's see, the first two are easy. They'd have no choice but to endorse John McCain and Gordon Smith, probably justified by their "experience" or something like that. Of course they've already given Telfer the nod, so that fits the pattern... that is, the pattern I'm trying to disprove. They'd also have to go with Republicans Chuck Burley, Gene Whisnant, and Mike Huffman. Now some think that in the County Commissioner race, the Bulletin could take Unger over Daley, in part because of Daley's ill-advised remarks about domestic violence, and in part to throw at least one Democrat in to the mix. We'll see.

Because the Bend City Council race is technically nonpartisan, predictions are not as easy as looking for the "R" after the candidate's name. So instead I will follow the money. You see, in politics, money never lies. And that's why I occasionally like to visit the State of Oregon's website that tracks all campaign donations -

Okay, done. So according to the database, the local builders, developers and realtors heavily favor Jeff Eager over Jodie Barram, Kathie Eckman over Linda Johnson, Don Leonard over Jim Clinton and Tom Greene over Peter Gramlich. Now if the Bulletin editorial board was really a mouthpiece for Bend's good old boy network, then they'd simply have to endorse Eager, Eckman & Leonard. I'd throw Greene in there with them as well except that Gramlich is so clearly more qualified, the paper might go with him so not to appear ridiculous. So there you have it; my attempt at proving a negative. If the Bulletin doesn't endorse the following candidates (McCain, Smith, Burley, Whisnant, Huffman, Eager, Eckman & Leonard) then they have no political bias. Time will tell.

Dean Warner, Bend

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