The Oregon gubernatorial debates between Democratic incumbent Ted Kulongoski and Republican challenger Ron Saxton have been heating, event by event. The last time we saw them on television, the event was fairly cool. But review of Friday's radio-only match at the Portland City Club confirms that these two candidates are starting to swing hard, both using some effective lines. If the governor hit with spirit and passion - and ferocity at times, something not necessarily expected of him - Saxton had sound zingers as well. And the responses generally were good. Both are on notice: If either of these guys isn't game-on on Tuesday, he may be eaten alive.
Which makes us a little eager for next Tuesday's televised event - the fourth and last. (And a quick thumbs up here to both of them for participating in such a substantial number of debates; such commitment to faceoffs isn't happening in all races around the region.) For all the shots fired on Friday, plenty of openings are left, and we're betting no powder will be left dry after Tuesday. Bear in mind: Oregon ballots go out to the voters next weekend.
The City Club debate certainly did point some directions for the candidates' end games. Some items to watch for: (more…)