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The Mail Tribune's recommendations for the Nov. 5 general election

Editor's note:

Ballots for the Nov. 5 election were mailed Friday. Here are the Mail Tribune editorial board's recommendations for the election:


Ted Kulongoski. We trust him to lead the state. We'd like to trust Kevin Mannix, but we're not sure who he is.

U.S. Senator:

Bill Bradbury. Incumbent Gordon Smith is too closely attached to the Bush administration line for our taste, and he's run a nasty, negative campaign to boot.

U.S. Representative:

Greg Walden. we don't always see eye to eye, but he's more flexible than his opponents give him credit for.

State Senator, 3rd District:

Lenn Hannon. He's independent and fearless, and giving up his decades of experience at this crucial time would be a mistake.

State Representative, 4th District:

Shayne Maxwell. She proved her abilities by organizing the telephone rate campaign, and she's conservative enough to represent her rural district well.

State Representative, 6th District:

Rob Patridge. A smart, moderate Republican, he has climbed the leadership ladder and is well positioned to help reach consensus on the tough issues.

State Representative, 55th District:

George Gilman. He's served in Salem before, and he lives on our side of the sprawling new district that straddles the Cascades.

Jackson County Commissioner, Position 1:

Jack Walker. We often disagree with him, but he has a good grasp of how government works and represents a large segment of the county's voters.

Jackson County Commissioner, Position 3:

Dave Gilmour. Incumbent Ric Holt has been singing the same song for years without much to show for it. Gilmour is sharp, energetic and committed.

Circuit Court Judge, Position 1:

Lorenzo Mejia. We see no reason to replace a new judge who has the support of the governor who appointed him as well as his colleagues on the bench and in the legal community.

Circuit Court Judge, Position 8:

Bill Purdy. His experience and his demeanor will make him an excellent judge.

Jackson County Sheriff

: Ed Mayer. Despite unhappiness in the ranks of the department, Mayer has far more experience and a better grasp of the realities than his opponent, and will makea better sheriff.

Measure 14:

Yes. Long-forgotten racist language should be removed from the state Constitution.

Measure 17:

Yes. If 18-year-olds can vote, they should be able to run. And we're not afraid the Legislature will be overrun with teenagers.

Measures 21 and 22:

No. Written by people who don't like Oregon's legal system, these measures would make that system worse, not better.

Measure 23:

No. Our health care system is a mess, but this cure would be worse than the disease.

Measure 24:

Yes. It makes sense to let denturists provide partial as well as full dentures directly to patients.

Measure 25:

Yes. Oregon's minimum-wage workers haven't had a raise in four years, and this measure would link the minimum wage to inflation so they can keep up in the future.

Measure 26:

Yes. Returns some accountability to Oregon's initiative system by removing the payment-per-signature incentive to commit fraud.

Measure 27:

No. It might make sense to label genetically engineered foods if some potential harm had been proven, but even then, such a requirement should be nationwide, not confined to a single state.

Measure 17-90:

Yes. Rogue Community College's Medford campus has now passed the Grants Pass campus in enrollment. A real campus downtown is good for students and the community.

Measure 15-37:

Yes. Medford's two middle schools are too big, and will get even bigger with the addition of sixth-graders. The skill center concept has been successful elsewhere and can be here, too.

Measure 15-41:

Yes. It's more expensive than other local tax measures, but it will give Jacksonville's fire department a permanent income source with only a five-year tax.

Measure 15-36:

Yes. Phoenix needs to maintain police and fire protection, and this would do so for a net cost of just 48 cents per &

36;1,000 of assessed value.

Measure 15-35:

Yes. Talent's parks are in need of some TLC, and this would provide it at a very modest cost.

Measure 15-40:

Yes. The Shady Cove-Trail fire district needs to improve its fire station facilities to comply with federal laws and regulations.

Measure 15-39:

Yes. Shady Cove police cannot maintain existing police protection without this measure.