At Large

Our team sent a questionnaire to each candidate, asking questions that would provide positions on issues of importance to Fair Elections Portland. Candidates answered each question with "yes," "no," "unsure," or "decline to answer." The responses have not been altered or changed in any way.

KEY:

The Candidate responded with a YES to the question.

The Candidate responded with a NO to the question.

The Candidate responded with an UNSURE to the question.

The Candidate declined to respond.

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William Baileyis running for at large.

 

Declined to respond.

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Catherine Buxtonis running at large.

 

Supports Municipal Clean Elections.

"Running for office can be prohibitive for working class people and people with limited means/access to generational wealth, especially people of color. A clean elections fund will diversify candidates and ensure they are spending time engaging with voters, not fundraising and appeasing donors."

Supports Municipal Citizen Initiatives.

"I support the citizen referenda process, and hope to write structures for public processes to get better representation for city resident so they do not need to lean on the referenda process because policy demands are so infrequently met."

Supports greater public input at City Council meetings.

"I would like to explore not only how to increase input, but to ensure it is more diverse and representative of impacted communities. I would also like to build multi-modal means of collecting input and explore the idea of neighborhood assemblies."

Supports Citizens' Rights Ombudsman.

"I strongly support this important and independent bridge between city and citizens."

Supports improving voting processes and access.

"Anything that makes voting easier and more accessible to more people."

Supports measures to assess and remediate structural racism within Portland government and city services.

"Yes--there are so many ways we could address this, from racial impact statements to independent police review, to investing in DEI staff, evaluating public comment based on identity, funding a department of public safety from police budget & more."

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Marpheen Channis running at large.

 

Supports Municipal Clean Elections.

"We can help level the playing field and lower barriers for people, especially BIPOC people, who want to run for office and help chart a brighter future for Portland. The Commission ought to explore the best ways to implement a clean elections programs that is sustainable and accessible, especially if it can be established as part of the existing Maine Clean Elections program."

Supports Municipal Citizen Initiatives.

"Support citizens' initiatives, or direct democracy, on broad policy matters. And I believe we need to refine and improve the process. I believe Democracy is better served when citizens are fully informed through a robust, public, inclusive and participatory process that allows for all Portlanders to be involved – not just special interest groups. Direct democracy works when citizens are informed, in plain language and terms voters can understand, of the implications and consequences, good or bad, of a particular decision they are about to make. When we present very technical issues with pages of legal language, we do not do Democracy justice, especially for voters with busy lives, children, and other time constraints."

Supports greater public input at City Council meetings.

"Yes, I believe we can always improve our public processes and meetings in a way that is inclusive and allows for more voices at the table. I believe one way we could accomplish this is to hire staff for the council and mayor, perhaps through the creation of an “Office of Constituent Service,” who will assist the council and mayor with outreach, public meetings and hearings, and community relations."

Unsure about the Citizens' Rights Ombudsman.

"Rather than creating another position, the Charter Commission should look at refining and improving what we currently have by limiting when executive sessions, expanding freedom of access, and streamlining and improving how FOIA (Freedom of Information) requests are handled."

Supports improving voting processes and access.

"I would like to explore with other Charter Commissioners ways to improve and make voting easier, including through drop boxes and early voting opportunities. I would also like to see the Clerk’s Office work better with ECBOs and the immigrant community on providing ballot, election, and voting information in multiple languages."

Supports measures to assess and remediate structural racism within Portland government and city services.

"I believe we should make structural changes that allow the city to make progress on these issues. Portland is a welcoming, diverse and vibrant city that has led the State of Maine in issues such as civil rights and LGBTQ rights. But as someone who works in human rights, diversity, inclusion and equity, I’m aware that we can do better."

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Lawson Condreyis running at large.

 

Supports Municipal Clean Elections.

"I'm in favor of creating increasing representation smaller districts, which would make campaigns inherently cheaper."

Supports Municipal Citizen Initiatives.

"Yes with a caveat - I don't think charter changes should be done by referendum."

Supports greater public input at City Council meetings.

Unsure about the Citizens' Rights Ombudsman.

"Not sure - would this be a staff position? A committee of volunteers to review on an ongoing basis?"

Supports improving voting processes and access.

Supports measures to assess and remediate structural racism within Portland government and city services.

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Steven DiMillois running for at large.

 

Declined to respond.

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Anthony Emersonis running at large.

 

Supports Municipal Clean Elections.

"A clean elections program would make it easier for working class people to run a for office in Portland."

Supports Municipal Citizen Initiatives.

"Absolutely. I will always fight to strengthen democracy in Portland."

Supports greater public input at City Council meetings.

Supports Citizens' Rights Ombudsman.

"Navigating political landscapes is hard for average people. I absolutely support offering them every bit of assistance we can."

Supports improving voting processes and access.

"Absolutely. I also think we should increase the number of polling places in the city — Grace Baptist Church is hard to get to from where I live!"

Supports measures to assess and remediate structural racism within Portland government and city services.

"Absolutely. Portland is at a crucial crossroads — the time is now to fight for equity in our city."

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Ben Grantis running at large.

 

Thoughts on Municipal Clean Elections:

"I support creating a public financing system in the Charter, and I support the Council fully funding the program. However, I don't believe this type of budgetary decision should be made mandatory in the Charter. We have a lot of important progressive priorities in Portland that are competing for the same dollars."

Thoughts on Municipal Citizen Initiatives:

"Yes, I support the referendum process for the purpose of enacting ordinances. I am less sure about the same process for Charter amendments, since we already have a citizen-led process to amend the Charter."

Thoughts on greater public input at City Council meetings:

"Yes. There must be a way to increase participation and also to make participation easier.

Thoughts on the Citizens' Rights Ombudsman:

"This sounds like a good idea, but I would want to know about how the position would be 'independently' appointed. By the Mayor? The Council? It might fit in with a larger role for an Ombudsman, so I don't think I would confine it to just access. "

Thoughts on improving voting processes and access.

"Yes, I support making voting as accessible as possible. Drop boxes and expanded early voting make sense and I would support each.

Thoughts on measures to assess and remediate structural racism within Portland government and city services:

"Yes, this is important analysis that is long overdue, and I support it. As a model, I would look at the measures the Legislature recently took to require racial impact studies of proposed legislation."

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Ian Housealis running for at large.

 

Declined to respond.

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Nasreen Sheikh-Yousefis running at large.

 

Supports Municipal Clean Elections.

"I support clean Elections for all municipal races."

Supports Municipal Citizen Initiatives.

Supports greater public input at City Council meetings.

Unsure about the Citizens' Rights Ombudsman.

Supports improving voting processes and access.

Supports measures to assess and remediate structural racism within Portland government and city services.

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Patricia J. Washburnis running at large.

 

Supports Municipal Clean Elections.

"Publicly funded elections open the door to candidates of moderate to low income and help improve representation in municipal offices."

Supports Municipal Citizen Initiatives.

"The voters are the decision-makers."

Supports greater public input at City Council meetings.

"In particular, I support allowing comments and questions from voters attending remotely. This will expand access to city government for people with disabilities and family responsibilities that make it difficult for them to attend meetings in person."

Unsure about the Citizens' Rights Ombudsman.

"I think this may not be the right solution to this issue, but am willing to learn more."

Supports improving voting processes and access.

"Yes, I support anything we can do to make it easier for voters to exercise their rights, within the limits imposed by state and federal laws."

Supports measures to assess and remediate structural racism within Portland government and city services.

"This is one of the most important things city government can do and I particularly support efforts that center the voices of communities of color."