02-05-2023  3:19 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Portland Cop Fired for Leaking False Allegations Against City Commissioner Reinstated

Mayor Ted Wheeler fired Brian Hunzeker after he leaked a false complaint saying city Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty had been involved in a hit-and-run crash.

Hundreds of Portland City Workers on Strike for Better Pay

Workers represented by the union Laborers’ Local 483 have been without a contract since June. Negotiations over a new four-year deal broke down in December

Washington State Gov. Inslee Tests Positive for COVID-19

He plans to continue working. Trudi Inslee, the first spouse, has tested negative.

Oregon BIPOC Caucus Calls for Action to Support Victims of Gun Violence

The Legislative Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) Caucus has released the following statement in response to the tragedy at Half Moon Bay, CA that left seven dead and one person wounded, all of whom were people of color

NEWS BRIEFS

Market Features Work of Local Black-Owned Businesses for Black History Month

MESO Makers Market in Portland to feature the work of 40 local, Black-owned small businesses to celebrate Black History Month in...

The Seattle Public Library's Homework Help Program Expands to Eight Locations and Increases Hours

Homework Help, The Seattle Public Library’s free after school tutoring service, will add two locations and increase hours in...

County Seeks Community Needs Survey Responses From Residents

Clark County Community Services is asking residents who are low-income to complete a survey to help determine what resources and...

"Meet Me at Higo" Opens in the Level 8 Gallery of The Seattle Public Library's Central Library

The traveling exhibit from the Wing Luke Museum tells a fascinating community and family history about Seattle’s Japantown ...

NAACP Portland Calls for Justice With Community Prayer Vigil

Community leaders will hold a prayer vigil Tuesday, Jan. 31 at noon, to reflect on the tragic brutality that led to the death of Tyre...

US states take control of abortion debate with funding focus

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — Though the Insight Women’s Center sits at the epicenter of a reinvigorated battle in the nation’s culture wars, the only hint of its faith-based mission to dissuade people from getting abortions is the jazzy, piano rendition of “Jesus Loves Me” playing in a waiting...

Oregon brothers cut food waste and created the tater tot

ONTARIO, Ore. (AP) — When brothers Golden and Francis Nephi “Neef” Grigg began renting a frozen foods plant in the tiny Idaho border town of Ontario, Oregon, in 1949, they were hoping to expand their existing frozen corn business to include potatoes. Little did they know they’d taken the...

DeVries and Drake earn 85-82 2OT win over Valparaiso

VALPARAISO, Ind. (AP) — Tucker DeVries scored a career-high 32 points and grabbed 11 rebounds and Drake beat Valparaiso 85-82 in double overtime on Saturday night. Roman Penn scored 16 points and added 12 rebounds and six assists for the Bulldogs (19-6, 10-4 Missouri Valley...

Bradley defeats Northern Iowa 77-69

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (AP) — Malevy Leons scored 19 points as Bradley beat Northern Iowa 77-69 on Saturday night. Leons was 5-of-8 shooting, including 4 for 6 from distance, and went 5 for 8 from the line for the Braves (17-8, 10-4 Missouri Valley Conference). Rienk Mast went 8 of 12...

OPINION

Updates That May Affect Your Tax Season

The IRS released a statement that taxpayers should brace themselves for small tax refunds due to no economic impact payments ...

Unaffordable Rental Costs Now Plague 44 Million People in Every State Economic Inequality Places Most Risk of Eviction on Blacks and the Poor

For the first time in more than two decades of research, every state now has renters who are nearing a financial breaking point in housing affordability. ...

The Beating and Murder of Mr. Tyre Nichols, A Black Man

Time to Abolish the Criminal Injustice System ...

It's Time to Irrigate the Fallow Ground of Minority Media Ownership

In 2023, one aspect of civil rights and racial justice that barely remains addressed is racial inclusion in media ownership. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

DeSantis eyes 2024 from afar as GOP rivals move toward runs

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis may be months away from publicly declaring his presidential intentions, but his potential rivals aren't holding back. No fewer than a half dozen Republicans eyeing the White House have begun actively courting top political operatives...

At Nichols' funeral, Black America's grief on public display

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — The sound of the djembe drums started as a low tremble and grew more distinct as the musicians drew closer to the hundreds gathered inside the Memphis church. “We love you, Tyre,” the drummers chanted, referring to Tyre Nichols, a 29-year-old Black man...

Arkansas Gov. Sanders to give GOP response to Biden address

WASHINGTON (AP) — Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders will deliver the Republican address to the nation in response to President Joe Biden's State of the Union speech next week as the GOP seeks to show it's creating a new generation of leaders. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and...

ENTERTAINMENT

Jessy Wilson on 'Keep Rising' anthem and the hope it brings

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Singer-songwriter Jessy Wilson was ready to give up her musical dream when a film about female African warriors showed her the power of perseverance. Wilson’s Grammy -nominated song “Keep Rising,” was picked by director Gina Prince-Bythewood to be...

Bryan Adams, crafting albums amid Grammy Award nomination

NEW YORK (AP) — Bryan Adams may have nabbed his first Grammy nomination in over two decades, but he won't be at the ceremony. He's got a gig that night. The Canadian rock star had committed to a concert in Las Vegas on Sunday and he didn't want to disappoint his fans or his crew by...

Review: Stafford-Jutz album brings to life forgotten voices

“Lost Voices,” Tim Stafford & Thomm Jutz (Mountain Fever) “Lost Voices” features new songs written in the past tense, and serves as an engaging soundtrack to neglected chapters in American history. The album comes from the formidable singer-storyteller team...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Grammy predictions: AP writers debate who'll win on Sunday

The Beyhive is all abuzz over the possibility that Beyoncé will have a chance to make Grammy history this year,...

Biden makes progress on 'unity agenda' outlined in 2022

WASHINGTON (AP) — A year ago, President Joe Biden used his first State of the Union address to push top...

Chile wildfires spread amid heat wave as death toll rises

SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — Chile extended an emergency declaration to yet another region on Saturday as firefighters...

Sri Lanka marks independence anniversary amid economic woes

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sri Lanka marked its 75th independence anniversary on Saturday as a bankrupt nation,...

Israeli army besieges homes of fugitives in West Bank raid

AQABAT JABR REFUGEE CAMP, West Bank (AP) — The Israeli army raided a refugee camp near the Palestinian city of...

Bolsonaro ponders election defeat, as crowd chants ‘fraud’

MIAMI (AP) — Only a few weeks after his supporters stormed the seat of his country's government, former...

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.''

 

MLK Breakfast 2023

Photos from The Skanner Foundation's 37th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Breakfast.