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Peter Sorenson and Rob Handy are Still Running for Re-election Even Though They Were Both Found Guilty of Violating Oregon’s Public Meetings Law

Slap Down, Pat Down, or Just a Pat on the Back?
By Scott Rohter - January 2011

“The way of a fool is right in his own eyes” – Proverbs 12:15

This article is the second in a series, republished especially for the May 2012 election campaign.

Editor’s note:  This article was first published in January, 2011.  This year Rob Handy and Peter Sorenson are running for re-election to the Lane County Board of Commissioners from District 4 and District 3 respectively.  It is important for the voters of North and South Eugene to remember that they were both found guilty of serious ethical violations, because they broke Oregon’s Public Meetings Law, and they were found guilty not by a Republican judge, of which there are not very many in Oregon, but by an impartial judge of the State of Oregon.  Together Handy and Sorenson cost all the residents of Lane County almost $750,000 in attorney’s fees!  This wasn’t a political witch hunt as some on the Left like to claim.  It wasn’t the plaintiff’s in the case (former Lane County Commissioner Ellie Dumdi, and businessman Ed Anderson) who found the defendants, Handy and Sorenson guilty. It was an impartial judge of the State of Oregon, from Coos Bay!

After the court ruling, and an aborted attempt to appeal the guilty verdict by Sorenson, our County Board of Commissioners literally bent over backwards in a spirit of bi-partisanship to accommodate the two guilty defendants, by agreeing to pay for all but a small portion of their legal bills. And an agreement was reached behind closed doors in which Sorenson and Handy would not have to publically admit to any further wrongdoing.  However the Judge had already pronounced his verdict.  They were both guilty, and by the very fact that they signed this agreement, and agreed to pay $30,000 each toward the cost of their defense, they tacitly acknowledged their guilt...  Read on:

Does Lane County Commissioner Rob Handy know the difference between a slap down and a slap on the back? Well apparently not, because he thinks that Judge Michael Gillespie gave him and Commissioner Pete Sorenson the green light to go ahead and hold more of the those cozy little one on one “ chain meetings” with  other members of the Board Commissioners, behind closed doors to deliberate on matters of public policy. See my article: Slapped Down by the Judge but Not Knocked Down. Apparently Mr. Handy is not only “not so handy” but he is also not so bright…or was that just a lot of spin that he was laying down in that radio interview with KUGN.

After all that has happened since (former) Commissioner Ellie Dumdi filed a lawsuit against Commissioners Rob Handy, Peter Sorenson, and Bill Fleenor, if Mr. Handy still doesn’t know that he and “Shifty” Pete Sorenson did something wrong, then he needs to check himself into Lane County Mental Health for a good “reality check”. I hear we’ve got some pretty well paid doctors over there according to the latest salary figures released by Lane County, and they might as well be earning some of that money. If all of those psychiatrists over there could figure out how and why criminals do what they do, then perhaps they could develop a cure for sociopaths, and a treatment to control their criminal behavior! I suggest they start with Rob Handy and Peter Sorenson as human guinea pigs!

If they could just discover a therapeutic drug for Pete and Rob, (funny how that rhymes with cheat and rob) then perhaps they could quietly both “serve out their terms” and then retire back into private life. Peter Sorenson and Rob Handy are both up for re-election again in 2012. I hope the good voters of South Eugene and River Road/Santa Clara have long memories!

"The truth, the political truth, and nothing but the political truth.
A journalist has no better friend than the truth."
- Scott Rohter


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