• A new analysis by MuckRock, a nonprofit that helps people file public records requests, ranked Oregon as the worst state in the nation in response time for records requests with an average wait of 148 days. The long wait time is because of unclear state law on response time, the group says. Improving public access to records was one of Gov. Kate Brown’s campaign promises, telling Eugene Weekly while on the campaign trail that she was dedicated to transparency and had already cleared a huge backlog. MuckRock had a different experience. The positive, though, is that when you’re at dead bottom, there’s nowhere to go but up. Several bills now in the Oregon Legislature address public records.




• Arguments before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in the Kelsey Rose Juliana et al v. USA case are set for 9:30 am Tuesday, June 4, in Portland. This is the next step in the case sometimes called Our Children’s Trust, filed in Eugene. The case should be allowed to go to trial — but who dares to guess what the Ninth Circuit will do?

• Whatever the Mueller report says and who is going to know it probably won’t matter 20 months from now.  That’s November 2020, an incredibly important election for the future of our democracy when a good number of Republican-controlled Senate seats and the White House is up for grabs. Organizing is underway locally and across the country for the Democratic Party to seize the Senate and the presidency. Democrats won in 2018. Bring on 2020.

We love benches. EW staff and strangers have long enjoyed a welcoming bench in front of our red building on Lincoln Street. It’s been deemed a “beast of a bench” and was put together by Eugene-based artist Tim Boyden, who recently closed his gallery Out on a Limb on Broadway and is now selling from his university area home. He is famous for much more sophisticated benches than this one, but we like its sturdiness and simplicity. Come sit on our new bench!

The Trump regime wasted no time in pushing back against the news media in the wake of the Mueller report. His re-election campaign issued an enemies list of people who shouldn’t be interviewed on television, including House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, House Intelligence Committee member Eric Swalwell, Senate Judiciary Committee member Richard Blumenthal and DNC Chair Tom Perez. OK, maybe we’re just jealous that EW didn’t make the list, but this is a move worthy of President Richard Nixon.

• We’ll be watching to see who replaces Oregon State University President Ed Ray next year when he ends a long career in Corvallis that began in 2003. An economist, he has been highly respected in the state and certainly a stabilizing force in some rough years for financing higher education.