Into the unknown

The news that Ted Wheeler is trailing Sarah Iannarone by double digits in the Portland mayoral race is remarkable enough in its own right, but it raises a broader question about the direction of the City Council. If Wheeler loses and Mingus Mapps unseats Commissioner Chloe Eudaly, the whole City Council will have turned over in the last two years, with four of the five seats changing hands in 2020. This would be the lineup on January 2, 2021:

That sure would be interesting. But I'm not sure whether it would be good interesting or bad interesting. The arrogant bureaucrats, employee union reps, and developer weasels are probably licking their chops to have such a green group to manipulate.

And the City Hall news of early 2021 would be dominated by some major disruption in the public safety realm, as Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty becomes the police commissioner. The police union deserves to come down several pegs, and Hardesty says she's the one to make that happen. But man, it isn't going to be pretty.

The protesters will be happy. At least some of them. At least for a little while.

The business community, other than perhaps the developer overlords, will not be pleased. And taxpayers already concerned about how much all the madness is costing will worry even more, as the new lineup probably has plenty of dreams and not a lot of high-finance experience. The city's cash flow in any given year is well in excess of $2 billion. Yet it's deeply in hock.

Even if the new folks know what they're doing, that much turnover in that short a time is going to make for a bumpy ride.