By News-Register staff • 

Starrett wins commission seat with 51 percent

Mary Starrett of Newberg appears to have claimed Position 3 on the Yamhill County Commission by winning 51.1 percent of countywide votes in Tuesday's primary election.

Her chief challenger, Debra Bridges of Dundee, has 37.3 percent of the vote. Marc Shelton of Newberg, who spent and campaigned sparingly, ran a distant third with 11.6 percent.

In final but still unofficial returns, Starrett had 10,051 votes to Bridges' 7,339. Shelton had the remaining 2,284, with 33 unprocessed write-in votes.

To clinch the seat outright, Starrett needed to finish above 50 percent. And she just made it.

Starrett found herself in a similar situation four years ago in a run against Mary Stern, who is resigning to accept a post with the Association of Oregon Counties. That time, however, she fell just a handful of votes short of claiming a majority in May, and ended up losing in November.

Now, with county commissioners needing to replace Stern for the remainder of 2014, Starrett likely will join the commission early by appointment.



Newspapers and News outlets should just give the news and facts in a fair and balanced way and never pick or endorse a candidate or an issue. That is a true conflict of interest.


Where is the "true conflict of interest", bill? I've been watching this stuff for a long time, and I think the NR has been extremely careful to avoid such things. It is not likely that the newspaper stands to gain any kind of advantage by endorsing a candidate for public office. You need to rethink your position, bill, or provide some kind of coherent rationale for your claim.

Jeb Bladine

Whoever first said, "Perception is reality," caused a great deal of second-thought angst for many people.
Newspapers produce "informed opinion" on important issues -- not more informed than yours, or anyone else who takes the time, but informed. With political endorsements it involves personal interviews, public statements, past actions and consideration of public needs in particular situations.
Newspaper opinions are published without any illusion that they will sway public opinion, rather with a hope that they will contribute positively to the informed debate needed for good public decisions.
Some, however, vilify newspapers for expressing those opinions, saying it represents bias in the news. When that perception starts to be taken as reality, newspapers get worried, especially in today's world of dwindling readership.
That's why, in part, the Chicago Sun-Times and Milwaukee Sentinal Journal, among others, decided to eliminate political endorsements in 2012.
So far, other major newspapers have not followed suit. But we all think about it, one way or the other. Here's an interesting commentary I found about that:

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