05-28-2023  9:54 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Former Senator Margaret Carter Receives Honorary Doctorate of Public Service

Margaret Carter was the commencement speaker for Willamette University's Salem undergraduate commencement ceremony

Ex-Seattle Man Gets 8 Years for Stealing $1M in Pandemic Benefits

Bryan Sparks, 42, was indicted for the fraud scheme in November 2021 and pleaded guilty to wire fraud and aggravated identity theft in January. He was also ordered on Tuesday to pay more than jumi million in restitution.

Boycotting Oregon GOP Senators Vow to Stay Away Until Last Day of Session

The walkout, which began on May 3 ostensibly because bill summaries weren't written at an eighth grade level as required by a long-forgotten law, has derailed progress on hundreds of bills

NEWS BRIEFS

Oregon and Washington Memorial Day Events

Check out a listing of ceremonies and other community Memorial Day events in Oregon and Washington. A full list of all US events,...

Communities Invited to Interstate Bridge Replacement Neighborhood Forums in Vancouver and Portland

May 31 and June 6 forums allow community members to learn about the program’s environmental review process ...

Bonamici, Salinas Introduce Bill to Prevent Senior Hunger

Senior Hunger Prevention Act will address challenges older adults, grandparent and kinship caregivers, and adults with disabilities...

This is Our Lane - Too: Joint Statement on the Maternal Health Crisis from the Association of Black Cardiologists, American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association

Urgent action is needed to combat the maternal health crisis in America and cardiologists have a vital role to play. ...

New Skateboarding Area Planned for Southeast Portland’s Creston Park

Area has largest number of overall youth and of people of color out of locations studied ...

Oregon, awash in treatment funds after decriminalizing drugs, now must follow the money

Funding for drug treatment centers in Oregon, financed by the state's pioneering drug decriminalization policy, stood at over a quarter-billion dollars Friday as officials called for closer monitoring of where the money goes. That need for oversight was demonstrated Wednesday when...

Judge says fire retardant drops are polluting streams but allows use to continue

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The U.S. government can keep using chemical retardant dropped from aircraft to fight wildfires, despite finding that the practice pollutes streams in western states in violation of federal law, a judge ruled Friday. Halting the use of the red slurry material...

Foster, Ware homer, Auburn eliminates Mizzou 10-4 in SEC

HOOVER, Ala. (AP) — Cole Foster hit a three-run homer, Bryson Ware added a two-run shot and fifth-seeded Auburn wrapped up the first day of the SEC Tournament with a 10-4 win over ninth-seeded Missouri on Tuesday night. Auburn (34-9), which has won nine-straight, moved into the...

Small Missouri college adds football programs to boost enrollment

FULTON, Mo. (AP) — A small college in central Missouri has announced it will add football and women's flag football programs as part of its plan to grow enrollment. William Woods University will add about 140 students between the two new sports, athletic director Steve Wilson said...

OPINION

Significant Workforce Investments Needed to Stem Public Defense Crisis

We have a responsibility to ensure our state government is protecting the constitutional rights of all Oregonians, including people accused of a crime ...

Over 80 Groups Tell Federal Regulators Key Bank Broke $16.5 Billion Promise

Cross-country redlining aided wealthy white communities while excluding Black areas ...

Public Health 101: Guns

America: where all attempts to curb access to guns are shot down. Should we raise a glass to that? ...

Op-Ed: Ballot Measure Creates New Barriers to Success for Black-owned Businesses

Measure 26-238, a proposed local capital gains tax, is unfair and a burden on Black business owners in an already-challenging economic environment. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Diverse Republican presidential primary field sees an opening in 2024 with voters of color

CHICAGO (AP) — During Donald Trump's first visit as president to Chicago, a frequent target in his attacks on urban violence, he disparaged the nation's third largest city as a haven for criminals and a national embarrassment. At a recent town hall, Republican presidential contender...

5 things to know about Memorial Day including its controversies

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — Memorial Day is supposed to be about mourning the nation’s fallen service members, but it’s come to anchor the unofficial start of summer and a long weekend of discounts on anything from mattresses to lawn mowers. Auto club AAA said in a travel forecast that...

Judge: School district can bar student from wearing Mexican and American flag sash at graduation

DENVER (AP) — A federal judge ruled Friday that a rural Colorado school district can bar a high school student from wearing a Mexican and American flag sash at her graduation this weekend after the student sued the school district. Judge Nina Y. Wang wrote that wearing a sash during...

ENTERTAINMENT

CBS is television's most popular network for 15th straight year

NEW YORK (AP) — CBS claimed the distinction of most-watched television network for the 15th straight year, even as those bragging rights don't mean what they used to. The network averaged just under 6 million viewers on a typical moment in prime time for the season that just...

Country singer Tyler Hubbard's growth expands beyond Florida Georgia Line

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Singer-songwriter Tyler Hubbard was fully prepared to hang up his boots so to speak when his duo partner in Florida Georgia Line, Brian Kelley, said he wanted to go solo. The pair had been together more than a decade, and whether you were a fan of their bro...

Movie review: Julia Louis-Dreyfus reteams with Nicole Holofcener in 'You Hurt My Feelings'

If I didn’t like Nicole Holofcener’s latest film, would I tell her? OK, sure, it wouldn’t be so odd for a critic to give an unvarnished opinion. But what about a sibling? Or a spouse? If they didn’t care for Holofcener’s movie, what’s more important: Being honest or making...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

South Korean arrested for opening plane emergency exit door, faces up to 10 years in prison

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — A man who opened an emergency exit door during a flight in South Korea was formally...

Asylum-seekers say joy over end of Title 42 turns to anguish induced by new US rules

TIJUANA, Mexico (AP) — The day that President Joe Biden's administration ended a public health measure blocking...

Indy 500 arrives with clear favorites, plenty of off-the-radar spoilers

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The favorites are well known after two weeks of qualifying and practice ahead of the Indy...

Cracks emerging in Europe's united front to battle climate change

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union has been at the forefront of the fight against climate change and the...

South Korean arrested for opening plane emergency exit door, faces up to 10 years in prison

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — A man who opened an emergency exit door during a flight in South Korea was formally...

EU official says Twitter abandons bloc's voluntary pact against disinformation

LONDON (AP) — Twitter has dropped out of a voluntary European Union agreement to combat online disinformation, a...

Michael Rubinkam Associated Press

A northeastern Pennsylvania man with longstanding ties to white supremacist groups entered a polling place on primary election day and wrote in his name for a low-level position with the local Republican Party committee.

Steve Smith wound up getting elected with a single vote -- his own -- and now presents a headache for a GOP that doesn't want him but might not be able to get rid of him.

Pennsylvania Democrats spread word last week of his April election, linking to a report by the Southern Poverty Law Center that described Smith's associations with ``an extraordinary array of white nationalist, skinhead, and neo-Nazi groups,'' including a group formerly known as the Keystone State Skinheads.

The Luzerne County Republican Committee and the state GOP denounced Smith's election to a four-year committee post representing Pittston's Fourth Ward, saying his views in no way represent their own.

The GOP ``does not endorse or represent any of the hateful views of Mr. Smith, nor did any of the voters in Pittston City or Luzerne County,'' Luzerne County Republican Party chief Terry Casey said in a statement. But he said the committee's bylaws indicate the only qualification for office is that a candidate has been a registered Republican for the last two years -- and do not include a provision that would allow Smith to be expelled because of his beliefs.

Smith, 41, of Pittston, announced his election on a website called White News Now, posting a photo of his election certificate.

He said he's no longer affiliated with the skinheads group, but he confirmed that he founded the European American Action Coalition, which says on its website that it ``advocates on behalf of White Americans'' and was ``founded in the fall of 2011 by a few well known White activists in the great and historic state of Pennsylvania.''

Smith told The (Wilkes-Barre) Citizens' Voice that he ran for the party post to help get Republicans elected and would fight any attempt to get him booted from the GOP committee.

He also rejected the white supremacist label.

``A white supremacist is someone who wants to rule over other races and I do not wish to do that,'' Smith told WILK-AM on Monday. ``I advocate on behalf of white people, much like the NAACP advocates on behalf of blacks or La Raza advocates on behalf of Hispanics.'' He went on to challenge the radio interviewer to ``name one majority black or Hispanic neighborhood or school district that you wish to move your kids to.''

Smith didn't return several messages from The Associated Press seeking comment.

Court records show Smith pleaded guilty in 2003 to state charges of ethnic intimidation and simple assault, both misdemeanors, and was sentenced to one to 12 months in prison. According to a 2003 newspaper account, Smith and two other members of the Keystone State Skinheads yelled racial slurs at a black man and threw a brick at him. Smith told the Wilkes-Barre newspaper that he spent two months behind bars and said the encounter was the result of ``drunken stupidity.''

Smith's election with a single write-in vote demonstrated the trouble that political parties sometimes have in finding people to run for low-level committee positions, especially in regions where they are relatively weak. The April primary saw Republicans elect 270 people to the Luzerne County GOP committee -- leaving about 100 spots unfilled.

While distancing themselves from Smith, Republicans accused Democrats of spreading the story to score political points.

``It's just absolutely disgusting that the Pennsylvania Democrats would throw this around,'' GOP spokeswoman Valerie Caras said. ``There are certain issues that rise above the embers of political bickering.''

Democratic spokesman Mark Nicastre said Tuesday that Republicans were slow to act once Smith's background was brought to light.

``We thought it was appropriate to raise awareness of it. We didn't think this was someone who should have a position in the Republican Party,'' he said. ``We're happy the Republican Party is finally realizing this is an issue they should take care of.''