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Portland Elects Openly Gay Mayor Sam Adams

Sam Adams, an openly gay man whose family lived on "food stamps and public housing" as he grew up, has been elected Portland, Oregon's mayor. As such, he'll be the first openly gay mayor of a top-40 U.S. city.

SamadamsThe Oregonian reports: " The city commissioner soundly defeated 12 other candidates Tuesday to assume the top office in the city and one of the tallest bully pulpits in the Pacific Northwest. He captured 58 percent of the vote to avoid a November runoff against travel agency owner Sho Dozono. Adams, 44, won by stressing specifics: He promised to work with school leaders to cut the dropout rate, make Portland a leader in environmentally friendly businesses and use the Portland Streetcar and better planning to spur urban renewal."

You may recall I posted about Adams last September as he was being targeted by Bob Ball, a gay Portland real estate developer who also had an interest in the mayor's office, in an ugly, unsubstantiated smear campaign involving an underage intern. Adams, obviously, survived that attack.

Adams takes over for outgoing mayor Tom Potter in seven months.

A very brief clip from the local news, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. So proud. This country remains a place where one can pull one's self up by the bootstraps, even if they are the only part of the boots with which one is born. I pray that Sam Adams will turn the good will and power with which he has been entrusted into programs that help those who are still struggling, against poverty, homophobia, and other societal ills.

    Posted by: rudy | May 21, 2008 9:24:00 AM

  2. Congrats

    Posted by: Jimmyboyo | May 21, 2008 9:58:16 AM

  3. I actually met him once at the Oregon Queer Youth Conference(he was our key note speaker), and I couldn't be prouder to have him be the mayor or Portland.

    Posted by: Daffyd | May 21, 2008 10:31:48 AM

  4. Great for Portland.They will have the best Mayor in the USA.I wish him and the city the very best.
    Congratulations Sam.

    Posted by: Oscar | May 21, 2008 11:47:28 AM

  5. To give you an idea of his appeal, one of my [straight] friends was bragging to me a couple of weeks ago that Sam had "eaten a fruitloop off his donut" outside Voodoo Donuts at a late night campaign event. Portland rocks.

    Posted by: PDXMARK2 | May 21, 2008 12:43:48 PM

  6. Congrats Mayor Adams! Now show them what a gay mayor can do!!

    Posted by: angrycitizen | May 21, 2008 1:11:07 PM

  7. I voted for Sho! Sam spends money like a drunken sailor on shit this city don't need.

    Posted by: Bud | May 21, 2008 1:26:51 PM

  8. Can I buy him a beer?

    Posted by: David | May 21, 2008 1:26:52 PM

  9. I voted for Sho! Sam spends money like a drunken sailor on shit this city don't need.

    Posted by: Bud | May 21, 2008 1:27:12 PM

  10. Once again, I am so proud of my city.

    The amazing thing is, Adams's candidacy didn't raise an eyebrow. No one, as far as I could tell, had the slightest issue with the fact that our probable new mayor was gay.

    The world has come a long way since I was a closeted kid in the mid-west in the 80s.

    Posted by: Miles | May 21, 2008 1:53:25 PM

  11. Congratulations Portland!

    So wonderful to see change in every aspect of America.

    I truly believe in the near future being gay, straight, bi, whatever is not going to matter.

    Posted by: FunMe | May 21, 2008 2:43:28 PM

  12. Actually, he's the first elected mayor of a top 40 city. Toni Atkins served as Mayor of San Diego for nearly a year after the mayor resigned.

    Congrats to Sam Adams.

    Posted by: Maine Gay | May 21, 2008 3:47:15 PM

  13. As a current resident of Dallas and a former resident of Portland, I was saddened we didn't elect Ed Oakley here in Dallas. Congrats to Mr. Adams, though!

    Posted by: Paul | May 21, 2008 11:33:21 PM

  14. This is terrific news. I must say I really like what's going on out West - maybe Gavin Newsom or Sam Adams will run for President some day.

    Posted by: Ted | May 21, 2008 11:42:38 PM

  15. I'm proud of my hometown! Sam Adams is fair and will fight for the rights of all Portlanders. He was chief of staff under former mayor Vera Katz so he knows what he's doing. Go Sam!

    Posted by: devilgirl | May 26, 2008 11:02:32 AM

  16. Congratulations to Sam Adams.This would have been unheardable during a good portion of my life that an openly gay man would be mayor of major large city. The "gay" is one aspect but Sam was not raised with a silver spoon & entitlements of the well-off.A kid raised not from the rich but to represent ALL shows some American dreams still hold true. I look forward to the Adams years of inteiiigence & vision. Mary Basombrio, Portland, OR.

    Posted by: Mary Basombrio | May 30, 2008 10:07:02 PM

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