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Mark Capell is a smart man, but he is also an in-the-box type of thinker. When asked what City Council should do to create more affordable housing—one of the most pressing issues facing City Council if it wants to preserve an all-inclusive way of life for residents—he responded by discussing a specific plot of land in southeast Bend. That approach is important—knowing the details and the lay of the land—however, we believe that City Council needs a bigger picture thinker right now, someone who will do more than just pick up projects piecemeal, but will radically adjust the entire framework and widening the scope of discussion that city council is addressing.

It is doubtful that Capell will agree with this assessment. During the endorsement interview with the two-term city councilmember and his challenger, Nathan Broddie, an internal medicine doctor at St Charles—the most tense endorsement interview of the entire slew this election cycle—Capell repeatedly pressed Boddie for more details about how he plans to address issues like affordable housing and the Urban Growth Boundary. "I would just like to hear specifics," he accused. "Everything just sounds like a good soundbite."

That is a legitimate criticism of Boddie, who is a novice politician and tends to wrap up his viewpoints in progressive rhetoric than sound grand, but may not mean anything. Yet, when pushed, Boddie does come up with specific plans, like talking about incentivizing zoning laws to encourage home-builders to put in more affordable housing—and that is the type of big picture thinking that the City of Bend needs as the city undergoes major growing pains.

To us, the current team of city councilmembers does not add up to the right type of forward-thinking leadership—too often, following instead of leading. Late this summer, for example, city staff, seemingly without any input from council and without a complete blueprint for downtown development, canceled a lease for Crow's Feet Commons to operate a prime section of the Mirror Pond Plaza. We are looking for city councilmembers who will challenge those current protocols, and will set a larger framework for the overall plan for Bend.

Moreover, we are looking councilmembers who we believe better represent community values when they do ultimately make decisions.

It is a leap of faith, but we hope that this is Boddie.

Read the Q&As with Nathan Boddie and opponent Mark Capell.

Watch our endorsement interview with the candidates below.

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