Mike Erickson Deserves Better

Mike Erickson deserves better
By Guest Opinion

Today Mannix released a letter attacking Mike Erickson based on an email from someone who knew Erickson. Unfortunately it boils down to a he said/she said story and that is it. Those conservatives who feverishly defended Clarence Thomas and espouse that everyone is innocent until proven guilty are now wishing Erickson to hang at the first sign of an accusation.

If the Republican Party leaders care then they need to step in and declare a time out for the sake of their future. This type of scorched earth attacks will leave both candidates permanently dead by Memorial Day. Too much is at stake in this rare congressional open door opportunity.

The highly private nature of the controversy means we may never know the full story. We have to accept that. Consider the public perception as the general public watches Republicans fight over this highly emotional and explosive issue of abortion. There is a big difference between what you expect the public to think and how they will really feel when it is all over.

Erickson has done what is expected of him. He ran when no one else did (consider the empty Wu, Blumenauer & DeFazio challenger seats). Erickson put up his own money, time and name. Erickson is not blameless. He did his own cross-the-line tax attacks on Mannix earlier. That is not justified either. Just consider the Lindland-Theimann, Hillary-Obama and the Merkley-Novick races. The political will strong enough to temper such problems in the primary will build a stronger coalition in the fall.

  • Tim Trickey


    You call for Republican leaders to “step in and declare a time-out”?

    What the h***? This isn’t first-grade recess…

    There are no time-outs for “big kids”, and as Erickson was the first to go negative on Kevin Mannix, spending hundreds of thousands of dollars trashing his reputation in a very public ad campaign, we’re now supposed to feel sorry for him for being called on his own hypocrisy?

    It’s a little too late for “gentlemanly quarrels” and civility. Apparently Erickson knows how to play rough, and the fact that Kevin Mannix can play rough too shouldn’t surprise anyone!

    I have news for all the readers out there; if a nobody like me knew about this secret, the Democrats knew about it as well.

    His paying for an abortion was not a very well-guarded secret, and you had better believe that they (the Demos) would have trotted it out in the General Election when the stakes were really high.

    I know some of the GOP hate the “abortion issue”, and hate to see our candidates talk about it at all, but this isn’t the case with the rank and file Republicans and conservatives.

    Some of us do care about abortion, and more importantly, everyone should care about hypocrisy, open deception, and dishonesty on the part of any candidate.

    Paying for an abortion and then attempting to solicit the “high ground” as a Right To Life candidate is reprehensible, and a perfectly reasonable campaign point to be brought up.

    If a candidate is willing to deceive voters in one area, what does that say about whether or not they will remain true to their campaign rhetoric when they get elected?

    So, to the author:

    Don’t tell the GOP leadership to get involved; they should continue to stay out of it and let the “adults” finish their fight.

    • devietro

      Tim don’t lie to us. Anybody who pays attention to Oregon politics knows that you, Sizemore and Mannix are basically responsible for the majority of the initiatives run in this state. Calling yourself a nobody is not really fair.

      Secondly, the ORP has been involved in this race, Vance Day has sent letters and a phone call with both Mannix and Erickson telling them to keep it clean, of course neither did. The ORP is in a mess anyway so it didnt surprise me that his advice was ignored.

      Like I mentioned in the earlier column about this

      To me Kevin’s choice to not run for AG and instead run for CD5 knowing that it would both cause a primary and leave a vacancy in the AG slot bugs me just as much as this letter.
      If I lived in CD5 Kevin would still have my vote (not because of this issue but just the fact that I have heard both of the guys speak many times and I like his polish and experience). It would have been nice to see Kevin run for AG and Mike for CD5 so they could both be effective in enacting change.

      • Tim Trickey

        O.K., if you insist I am “somebody”, I will defer to your wisdom. I only wish the rest of the Republican establishment gave me half the deference you do. I would venture that most of the “Lobby” and the big consultants out there have a very different opinion, but whatever…

        I, too, have expressed my opinions that I would love to see Kevin continue to stay here in Oregon and run for something other than Congress.

        But, you know what? It doesn’t matter what you or I think. Kevin Mannix wants to serve in the Congress, and as such, the only say we have in the matter is to vote for or against him. We don’t get to “monday-morning QB” his choices, and given what I know (as a nobody) he can and will make a fine Congressman.

        The Oregon GOP has asked the candidates to “play nice”, but that’s just what a “Party” is supposed to do. Both of these candidates are successful businessmen who are capable of making their own decisions. While I know they probably both respect and like Vance Day, both of them have to fight for their survival.

        My point is, if politics is the vehicle for democracy in action, things are going to get messy. And to be perfectly honest, Mike Erickson started the muck-raking with his mention of Kevin Mannix voting to raise “taxes”. Fine…that’s his right as a candidate. I have never complained about that.

        However, there seems to be quite a bit of hand-wringing out there regarding Kevin’s response. I can’t help but see a bit of hypocricy here.

    • Abraxia

      And what about Kevin Mannix selling out the people of Oregon 83 times on Taxes? And about using the office of the Chairman of the ORP in order to pay off his campaign debts?

      You’ve done your job well, Tim. We’re gonna have another Democrat in Congressional District 5, because no one is gonna vote for the Republicans now that these issues have been trotted out.

      Certain people warned me about you. Now I know the reason why.

  • Dylan Amo

    Much like the anon author … I felt very dirty after reading the letter from Mannix. I had heard these rumors AND MORE about Mike. (These “secrets” were not closely guarded) And yes … I was disappointed when Mike’s choice to run ads against Kevin suggesting that he is a “tax-raiser.” Like Tim, I know Kevin from his work within the party, on I&R petitions, etc. and thought the charge with just silly on its face. YES …. I was disappointed. But I was more disappointed in Kevin for this attack because I expected better from HIM. And maybe that’s just unfair that I have heightened expectations for him. But he really did simply push a rumor when he presented this email to the voters. It screamed a desperate … Hail Mary to me.

    And Tim and I may come from different sides of the “life” issue. But let me take exception with one thing that Tim shared. People can change their mind. (ESPECIALLY WITH REGARDS TO THIS ISSUE!) While this issue isn’t one that I’ve been deeply involved with … I’ve heard plenty of stories from my Christian Coalition and National Right to Life friends about girls that became pro-life AFTER terminating a pregnancy. While the stories all began somewhat different, they all came to the same point. That they regretted the decision, the resulting depression, and didn’t wish for anyone else to go through this very difficult choice. Now I certainly haven’t heard that rational from Mike … but I caution people being critical of people that might have been pro-choice in the past but are now pro-life. We all learn and grow from the choices we make in life. Regardless … I am sure we can all work together to make abortions rarer in Oregon.

    And my disagreement number 2 with Tim …. And this is solely an educated guess. But I don’t think we can assume that the Democrats would have used this issue in the general election. In fact, from the email exchange, we know that Darlene knew about this issue in 2006 and choose not to run with it. Assumption number 1 … I think it’s safe to assume that the Democratic nominee will have a similar position to Darlene with regards to abortion. So why would a pro-choice candidate run with an attack that runs counter to their own beliefs. It would completely cripple their message. Maybe a democratic surrogate would have introduced the issue … but again … I think that is highly unlikely. And I don’t think it should be assumed.

    Much like Devietro, if I lived in CD 5, I would still vote for Kevin because I think if elected he’ll do more than Mike to help local Republican efforts as a Congressman. And to me … team building should be our number one goal. A goal that was tarnished by the actions of Kevin yesterday.

    • Tim Trickey


      Two quick rebuttals:

      First off, 7 years ago is a long time, and if Mike Erickson did change his position on abortion since the time he allegedly paid for it, I would have to forgive him and respect his ability to have a change of heart. After all, I’m surely not without faults in my past.

      I don’t get the feeling that is the case, though, and the “damage control” he and Cary Evans are doing only reaffirms my instinctual reaction that “he got caught in a lie”.

      Secondly, the first time I heard about the abortion rumor was in a conversation with a Democratic operative. There is no doubt that the other side of the aisle knew about this, and to assume they didn’t drastically underestimates their capabilities.

      • Dylan Amo

        Hey Tim,

        I suspect that you and I agree to the first point for different reason. I see the story as one that continues to paint a pattern of deceptions from Mike. And THAT is his biggest problem. To me … you do have two Right to Life candidates … but with one you MIGHT need to question their sincerity and/or conviction because this story plays into the pattern of previous Mike stories.

        I feel bad for a lot of candidates. I think they’re placed up on pedestals and expected to be perfect. (Especially by the “new media”/ Anon web community.)

        As for the last point, obviously I wasn’t very clear. I agree that Democrats knew about it. In fact, if you look at the “2006 email” that was passed along to the press by Kevin. It shows Darlene on the TO: line. My point is … they knew and choose not to use it. Maybe the Dems didn’t use it because Darlene was going to win? Maybe they choose not to use it because it tangles the message from a pro-choice candidate? Not being in their camp … I guess we’ll never know for sure. My point was … don’t just assume that the Dems would use this story.

        Regardless … this whole situation sucks! See you soon.

  • Curious George

    Maybe I’m just not paying enough attention, but there seem to be a lot of folks upset about Erickson painting Mannix as having a history of supporting tax and fee increases.

    Is it a lie? Did he, or didn’t he?

    I just ask because before Kevin fell off his donkey, blinded by the light, and became a Republican, he seemed to be comfortable with tax hikes. Is it only fair game to look at his record since he switched teams?

  • Tired of BULL$h*t

    Mannix: I was for tax hikes before I was against them…but don’t hold that against me. I’m one of you know, right??


    Go Away Kevin! You’re a wolf in asses’ clothing.

  • Stephan Andrew Brodhead for Oregon

    Releasing the contents of an email of such a personal nature to the public in order to better one’s position is reprehensible. I personally favored Mr. Mannix by virtue of his legislative achievements, however, an individual that will go to this extent at the expense of another candidate, has lost my respect and support. Twater it down if you must but his was nothing less than brutal and tells more about Mr. Mannix then Mr. Erickson. Yes ,abortion is wrong, but using this type of event to better one’s lot is grotesque and extremely unkind. Good Christians forgive and do not seek gain at the behest of other human beings. This is not the middle school playground. Long time Republicans take the high road. If this makes me an out sider than so be it. Good luck Mr. Erickson., I throw my lot in with you,,,,, this time!!!!!!

  • Phoebe

    I agree with Stephan and if taking the high road seems difficult try raising your sights.

  • Funny Maker

    Erickson seems to be generating alot of creativity in the 5th district over his indiscretion. Take this poster about him for example that is being displayed over at indymedia. Funny 😉


  • Another Best Opinion

    Where’s the beef?

    Mikes old school republican: plays in the snow, and screws women.