Julie Parrish's dirty trick muddies waters on Measure 101
Almost ever since she was elected lo those too many years ago, West Linn's one-time beloved soccer mom business whiz who found her way into the Legislature has been doing dubious things. Julie Parrish is at it again.
This time she abuses the Oregon Voters' Pamphlet. And "abuses" is the proper word. Rarely, if ever, has someone bought a "no" argument and placed it in the "yes" section on a ballot measure. Parrish's target is Measure 101 on a special Jan. 23 ballot.
Either as an ill-advised PR stunt or merely as some sort of political ploy, Parrish is now turning the revered and respected Voters' Pamphlet, the one place you could go to get the straight info on both sides of an argument, upside down.
Joining her is Lindsay Berschauer of a West Linn political PR firm, also getting in on the dirty tricks act, and Republican Sen. Cedric Hayden.
Obviously, having the "no" arguments under the "yes" rubric right next to the truly affirmative president of the teachers union and the Oregon AFL-CIO and the Oregon Nurses Association, is designed to confuse voters.
Parrish is shamelessly using the cheapest political trick in the book: "If you can't beat them with the facts then baffle them with BS." In other words, confuse the voters as to what stuff really stands for and make them vote against their best interests. Parrish has created a new version of the word "two-faced."
As a mother, a would-be leader in the community and someone who says she represents the people of West Linn and Tualatin in the legislature to the best of her ability, Parrish should be ashamed. She is setting a horrible example and should be admonished by the Secretary of State Dennis Richardson.
Dennis Richardson is our top election official charged with overseeing the integrity of our elections, and in this case, he is the one responsible for monitoring the material in the Voters' Pamphlet. And the same one who, according to the Oregon Elections System for Tracking and Reporting, has paid Parrish and her PR firm and Berschauer hundreds of thousands of dollars for "campaign work" or the like in 2016.
If Parrish is trying to set herself up for a run as the next state senator or adding money to her corporate coffers or trying to make a name for herself for her own re-election in 2018, she has only succeeded in running her own name through the mud. Shame on her.
And shame on her dirty-trick accomplice, Secretary of State Dennis Richardson, for using public money to print this sham in the Voters' Pamphlet.
If we want ethical elections, then the Voters' Pamphlet is a crucial element. It should face serious scrutiny and something of a cleansing before the May primary elections.