While Anchorage tilts left, Portland voters bounce the Rose City’s soft-on-crime district attorney

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Multnomah County D.A. Mike Schmidt

Anchorage voters have just elected a leftist for mayor, with the unofficial win of Suzanne LaFrance over Mayor Dave Bronson. LaFrance was the pick of the Alaska Democratic Party and labor unions; Bronson is a Republican.

But to the south of Alaska, in Multnomah County, Oregon, which has been ruled by Democrats for years, soft-on-crime District Attorney Mike Schmidt just lost his re-election bid this week against his own Deputy District Attorney Nathan Vasquez, who has worked in the office for more than 25 years and promised voters he would crack down on the county’s infamous mayhem.

With more than than 167,800 votes counted, Vasquez was ahead with 53.5% and Schmidt lagged at 46%. Schmidt conceded on Wednesday evening.

“While we do not always see eye to eye, I am committed to a smooth transition,” he said at a campaign thank-you event. “Thank you to this amazing community for the support they have shown for this campaign. And thank you for the opportunity to serve these past four years. It is an honor I will cherish for a lifetime.”

The defeat was heard around the country as a warning signal to Democrats that the far left wing of the party is the road to not only urban decay but political ruin. Schmidt was singled out by former President Donald Trump as a radical leftist during speeches in 2020, the year that Schmidt took office. Schmidt used that as a badge of honor in a campaign ad, which you can view here:

Not that Portland is going all-in for Donald Trump. Vasquez would still seem liberal to many Americans, but is a moderate in Portland.

Vasquez served as a prosecutor at the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office for nearly 25 years. Most of his career has been dedicated to ‘person crimes’, working directly with victims of violent crimes and their families, he said.

In 2018, Vasquez took over the “Neighborhood Unit,” which focused on community engagement, and pioneered district attorney’s Strategic Prosecution Unit – a model that uses objective data to inform the decisions and actions of prosecutors and law enforcement, focusing on root causes of criminal behavior and creative solutions to prevent recidivism.

His unit has led some of the most successful prison diversion programs and created the “High Volume System User” model to identify and interrupt some of the most prolific repeat offenders in Multnomah County, his campaign website says.

Vasquez received his undergraduate degree from UC Davis, and later went on to earn his Juris Doctorate at Lewis and Clark Northwestern School of Law, with a specialization in Environmental Law. 

He told Oregon Pubic Broadcasting that he’s going to work to make the streets of Portland safer, but that it will not happen overnight.

His task is Herculean: Portland shootings and homicides increased by 300% between 2019 and 2022; in 2022, there were 1,306 homicides, nearly twice as many as San Francisco, which has 25% more population than Portland. Robberies in Portland rose 50% in 2022.

“Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt’s tenure as Portland’s chief prosecutor has proved controversial since his term began in May 2020—coincidentally, the very month when the anarchist riots kicked off. Elected on a reformist platform, he declined to file charges against most of those arrested for rioting, even when their crimes included burglary and the unlawful use of a weapon. He routinely releases violent criminals within days of their arrest and declines to file charges against violent people if they’re mentally ill,” according to City Journal, in an analysis by Michael Totten titled, “Portland Sobers Up.”

15 COMMENTS

  1. The cycle continues.
    Leftists (who behave like toddlers) will never understand the stupidity of their actions until after they suffer the consequences. Portland went from a great place to live and visit to an leftist hellhole because people who are not capable of foreseeing adverse outcomes got put in charge. And, now, Portland, OR is so far down on my “I will visit there again” list that it will be a cold day in heck before I even change planes there.
    .
    About time. Too bad crime had to get so bad before the average Portlander realized that prosecuting crime is important.
    .
    Anchorage is going to experience three, possibly six years of the leftism that turned Portland, Seattle, San Francisco, and LA into the places people (who can afford to) flee. Why? Because the average voter has not suffered enough from leftist policies to care about local elections.

  2. I live in West Anchorage and would like to join Eaglexit, or perhaps (similar to those in Oregon and greater Idaho), Greater Mat-su.

  3. Special thanks to Amy Demboski, her friend Scott Kendall, and Mike Porcaro for doing their part to undermine Bronson enough to push LaFrance across the finish line. Conservatives more interested in promoting their own agenda or lining their pockets than cooperating with other conservatives will insure this city continues to move left.

    • Blame the voters. If enough people cared to vote, Bronson might have won.
      About 50,000 bothered to vote.

      Anchorage gets what it deserves.

  4. Hippies are naive, Godless & stupid.
    And now they run cites (into the ground)

    Way to go Government workers, your greed & power is ruining our country …. one end to the other.

  5. Our Republican Mayor left the APD short staffed, LaFrance has committed to hiring more police officers. MRAK appears incompetent with their reporting

    • It is curious how the APD had ads on pretty much every bus encouraging people to apply for the APD, yet no one did.
      And, somehow that is Mayor Bronson’s fault?

        • Those types of facts never enter the mind of leftists like Frank. It is the fault of a conservative. See, that is all the justification they need. Conservative did the wrong thing, all other facts be damned.

    • Yes a well paid police state is needed to shove communism down our throats.
      Stalin knew that, everybody knows that.

  6. Regarding Portland and Oregon: Despite the favorable flavor typically afforded Oregon in general, Portland and Oregon are deeply corrupt and have been since the 1970s when Neil Goldschmidt ascended the throne as Mayor of Portland. Goldschmidt, while so publicly fashionable was in fact a child sex predator abusing a teen-aged girl for a period of years. Many in Portland and in Oregon knew of his depravity yet looked away and benefited mightily from their association with Goldschmidt. Eventually exposed, Goldschmidt, to this day has never faced significant consequences for his crimes. The young victim had a shattered life, died young and suffered from drug addiction, while Goldschmidt lived in the south of France and is now back in the hills on Portland’s west side.

    Oregon, and Portland in particular, have been built on the legacy of Goldschmidt’s evil conduct. Portland and Oregon have given Goldschmidt a pass. I could care less about Portland.

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