Three supporters of Jefferson Smith’s campaign to be the next mayor of Portland have withdrawn their endorsements.
The unions representing rank and file police and firefighters released a short joint written statement saying they no longer support Smith’s candidacy.
The statement refers to no specific incident, merely stating that union members rely on them to make recommendations.
“We cannot,” the statement says, “make a strong recommendation for either candidate.”
It’s another blow to Smith, who has stumbled since details emerged of a drunken scuffle at a 1993 college party.
Smith acknowledged hitting a woman who mistakenly attacked him.
While several witnesses agreed Smith was defending himself back then, he’s had to answer questions this week about the incident, and how he handled the story.
Earlier, State Representative Carolyn Tomei, an occasional ally of Smith’s in Salem, confirmed she, too, asked to be removed from the campaign’s list of endorsers.
Tomei, who holds a degree in social work, has worked with Smith in the state legislature on fighting human trafficking. She has a record of supporting victims of domestic violence.
After Representative Tomei withdrew her endorsement, Smith said in a written statement that he’s “disappointed.”
He writes, “I respect her a tremendous amount, and that respect is abiding and enduring.”