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Lisa Loving of The Skanner
Published: 21 May 2008

More than a million Oregonians turned in ballots Tuesday, boosting Barack Obama's presidential campaign but giving poor outcomes for other Black contenders in the Portland area.
For the first time ever, Oregon's primary figured prominently in a presidential bid, although observers say Obama's 58 percent versus Hilary Clinton's 41 percent vote count was cancelled out by Clinton's win in the Kentucky primary, where she took 65 percent and vowed not to give up the fight.
Meanwhile, City Council candidate John Branam was edged out of the runoff for the seat vacated by Mayor-elect Sam Adams by slightly more than half a percentage point, losing the runoff spot to Charles Lewis. Lewis faces Amanda Fritz in November.
For City Council Position 2, candidates Fred Stewart and Harold Williams II won single-digit percentages in a race where Nick Fish wiped out the opposition with almost 62 percent of the vote.
For State House District 45, in Northeast Portland, Cyreena Boston was beat by Michael Dembrow, 35 percent to 42 percent. Boston had been endorsed by The Skanner, the Portland Mercury and The Oregonian.
State Senator Margaret Carter ran unopposed for her District 22 seat. Senator Avel Gordley's seat in District 23 will be championed this November by Rep. Jackie Dingfelder, who beat Sean Cruz, Gordly's longtime chief of staff.
Three crime-related measures passed overwhelmingly. Together, Measures 51 and 52 put actual language into the state Constitution expanding crime victims' rights, specifically, to "be present during specified proceedings, refuse defendants' discovery requests, receive restitution, obtain transcripts, consult about specified plea negotiations," according to the ballot language.
Measure 53 restores the right of local law enforcement agencies to confiscate certain kinds of property and keep it or covert it to cash and retain the financial windfall in cases of drug conviction or other crimes.

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