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  • Writer's pictureIndivisible Bend

Anthony Broadman for Bend City Council Position #2

Candidate: Anthony Broadman

Office: Bend City Council Position #2

Opponent: August Paul Johnson (NAV)

Key endorsements:

  • Indivisible Bend

  • Deschutes Democrats

  • Sierra Club Oregon Chapter

  • Umatilla Indian Reservation

  • Oregon League of Conservation Voters

  • Central Oregon Labor Chapter

  • UFCW Local 555

  • Oregon Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW)

  • Bend Chamber PAC

  • Jamie McLeod-Skinner

  • The Vocal Seniority


Q & A with Indivisible Bend


If you align with a particular political party, or abstain from choosing a political party, why do you make that choice?

I am a registered Democrat because I am committed to progressive values of egalitarianism, social justice, and protecting our kids' futures. I am a lifelong Democrat except for being NAV from 2016-18 for professional reasons.

Frankly, at 18 years old, I didn't make much of a choice. Both of my parents were public employees. My mom was involved in progressive politics when I was a kid and I didn't really choose being a Democrat. It's just what I have always known was right for me. My dad was very involved in Republican politics and I felt a natural affinity for my mom's approach to government.

The Democratic Party is not always a perfect fit for me, and I am often frustrated that we're not doing enough as liberals to move the ball forward. But it's the only major party that reflects my and my family's values.

If elected to Bend City Council, what are your top three priorities?

Progressive transportation infrastructure, more affordable housing, and a compassionate response and recovery to COVID-19. We must plan for smart growth in Bend and make sure the promise of our City is available to everyone here. Not only do I believe this, but Bendites are desperate for leadership that will ensure that we have a sustainable Bend for people to get around and live in.

Transportation: We must ensure that every kid in Bend can get to school safely on bike, by foot, or in a car. I believe we need a transportation system that reflects our commitment to the climate, equality, and the sustainable future of Bend. City Government has kicked the can on our transportation system for years if not decades. We have an opportunity to ensure that Bend is the most bikeable, walkable, driveable City, period. Anything less is a failure. I will work to ensure that Vision Zero informs every transportation decision we make.

Housing: As someone who has been a renter and a homeowner in Bend, I believe we must ensure that people who work in Bend can actually afford to live here. We must focus on infill and redevelopment. The City must try to surplus land in the interior of our City to show that HB 2001 and missing middle housing solutions can work on a large scale in Bend. We must incent developers and landowners to build the kind of missing middle housing we wish to see for our future. And we must demand and create the kind of sustainable infrastructure that affordable housing needs to grow from.

Housing and houselesness are inextricably intertwined. It's unacceptable that on this Council's watch homelesness has grown 12% -- COVID-19 will make that number even worse. And it's more than a number. It represents our neighbors, mostly Bendites and long-time Central Oregonians, who cannot afford the basic human right of a roof over their heads. I fear we are tumbling toward even more luxury homes and double digit homelessness growth rates. We need more complete, interior neighborhoods where working people can actually afford to live, grow our families, and grow our businesses. Affordable housing is a national problem and Bend cannot solve every housing problem, but we can try. I am committed to concrete steps that staff and advocates for affordable and missing middle housing tell us will actually work to make Bend a place Bendites can afford to live.

COVID-19 Response: In my work as an attorney for Bend businesses, I advocated for and initiated the proposal for using public space for retailers and restaurants to facilitate physical distancing during the pandemic. The City has not been a dynamic partner to workers and businesses in response to COVID-19. It was slow to act on open streets. It was slow to allocate CRF dollars to Bendites. It was slow to act on concrete lodging regulations that could have made it more likely that our teachers and students would be able to safely return to school this year. I was frustrated that while I was trying to find ways for businesses to stay open safely, the City Council just didn't meet.

How can Bend City Council affect equitable outcomes for marginalized communities? You can choose a particular issue like hiring practices, or legislation, or policy changes, etc.

- We must ensure that our Human Rights and Equity Commission has teeth and the mandate to make Bend a more just, inclusive place. I would look to the Commission to provide real solutions to ensure Bend's marginalized communities are at the forefront of all policy decisions and then look to Council to execute on such policy changes.

- Like vision zero for transportation, the climate action plan, and ensuring that we are equitably housing all Bendites, equity (including racial and economic justice) must inform every decision we make.

- On a micro level we must consider the small things to bring in and include more people in City government. Concepts I would explore and potentially seek to implement include: a youth liaison to Council and a youth member of the HREC; Council office hours; Council Meetings in communities and parts of our City that the City has historically underserved; payment, childcare, and meals for participants and committee persons; any other measure that we simply try as a pilot program to involve more diverse voices in civic processes.

- Inclusion is only as good as safety: We must reexamine and recalibrate our approach to policing, especially as we now must do more with less. I have advocated formally to Council for concrete ways in which we can make Bendites and Bend Police Officers safer, including adopting "8 Can't Wait," recalibrating qualified immunity in cases where the City has already indemnified officers, and implementing a CAHOOTS-style civil response for health crises.

Hindsight is 20/20, what’s important is that we learn from our experiences. What lessons have you learned from Bend City Council's COVID-19 response? 

It was too slow. I would have acted on April 15 and met at least once a week thereafter. This disease is dynamic and the situation is fluid. I fear we have kept bars open at the expense of schools. Our use of CRF CARES Act dollars was too slow. The most important lesson is that in the face of a dynamic, generational crisis, Council must act based on available science and data, act much faster, support staff better, and be more open to measures that will keep Bendites safer.

What do you think Bend City Council should do in response to the recent event with ICE and Customs & Border Patrol creating terror amongst our immigrant community?

First, we must champion the Wyden-Merkley Preventing Authoritarian Policing Tactics On American Streets Act. Second, Council should make clear that Bend can handle our own problems. There is no place for ICE or any other federal agency in our City unless we request assistance.

The ICE incursion was political kabuki aimed at destroying families, terrorizing Bendites, and creating a false narrative of lawless, liberal western cities. Peaceful Bend protesters didn't take the bait. I don't think there should have been or should be any reluctance to call ICE and the Trump Administration out. There is no place for ICE in our City.

I understand that 8 U.S.C. § 1357 currently provides ICE officers vast warrantless powers. That doesn't mean we can't decry it. That doesn't mean it's consistent with our values as Americans. It's not. I was deeply disturbed on August 12, 2020, as I watched 2 families ripped apart, as I was caught in non-lethal projectile crossfire, as I watched federal troops march into our City. But I was also honored and humbled to stand with the protesters and follow Bend's Latinx, civil rights, and religious leaders. At least one of my opponents believes that ICE should be allowed to do its job unimpeded. I think that's unAmerican and dangerous.

Again, Bend can handle Bend issues. Any incursion by ICE is wrong. City policy should formally reflect that. City policy should remove any doubt about the City's role when ICE comes to Bend. The City should oppose ICE in Bend to the greatest extent allowed under applicable laws. Again, Bend can handle Bend issues.

How will you represent the BIPOC community in Bend?

Thank you for allowing me to join the recent BIPOC Round Table. In my day job as a lawyer who represents Tribal governments, civil rights plaintiffs in federal court, and small businesses in Bend, I work to ensure my daughters will grow up in a just place. But we as Americans, Bendites, and progressives have to do more than fight for equality in court.   

I am running for City Council because the promise of this City must be available to everybody. That means having City Councilors who willingly participate in DEI training and walk the talk of racial, environmental, and economic justice. We must plan for smart growth. We need a safe connected transportation system so that every kid in Bend, no matter which corner of Bend they live in, can get to schools and parks safely. We need affordable housing for renters and buyers in the interior of Bend. We need a City Government that partners with workers and business to emerge from COVID safely and protects our most vulnerable. 

We need to invest in actual inclusion. We know that when we promote tourism to people, they move here. Let’s promote tourism to more diverse communities and ensure that Bend is the truly welcoming community we claim. Let’s take concrete steps to protect immigrants and communities of color by fixing qualified immunity, install a Human Rights Commission with teeth, and open up civic process to everyone. 

As of today, which individuals or groups are your three biggest donors?

Adam and Rachel Albright

Matt and Jessica Petkun

Central Oregon Realtor PAC.

What brought you to Central Oregon? What do you like best about this place we call home? 

My wife and I moved to Bend a decade ago so that she could take a job at BMC as a pediatrician. We're raising our three daughters here; they go to Bend public schools. I love so many things about Bend: the natural world that we make a huge part of our lives, the ability I have to serve Bendites and other people and governments in the region as a lawyer, the opportunities ahead of us to make Bend an even more just, sustainable City. But what I love best about Bend are the people. There is a spirit of optimism, cooperation, and progress that undergirds Bend. I believe most people stay in Bend or move here because they really love Bend. There are not many "accidental" Bendites. I may be naive, but Bendites demand so much and expect so much of ourselves. Good is not enough. That spirit is reflected in our demand that our public servants reflect our values, move our City forward, and understand that there is no limit on what we can do as a City. We demand that our public servants plan intelligently for the future. We demand that our public servants ensure that our City will be an exceptional, sustainable city for all now and for generations to come. That idealism and that demand for progress inspire me to serve every day.

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