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Members of Unified Command policing a protest in downtown Portland last night.
Members of Unified Command policing a protest in downtown Portland last night. Suzette Smith

Good morning, Portland! Time to grab your BBQ, your beer, and your freedom, because we've got a lot of news to cover today.

Here are the headlines.

• If you woke up this morning hopeful that the presidential election was decided while you were sleeping, I'm afraid I have some bad news for you: They're still counting votes in key swing states like Arizona, Nevada, Georgia, and Pennsylvania. But take heart: It still appears that Joe Biden is favored to eek out a win here. Which is nice, considering he won the popular vote by millions of votes!

Here's where NPR puts things for the presidential race, and the House and Senate, as of Thursday morning:


• Last night saw a relatively calm night of protests by Portland standards—but, perhaps in an attempt to send a stern warning sign against any post-election mischief, Gov. Kate Brown's Unified Command Team (that's the Oregon State Police and the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office) called in the National Guard to help police it. The cops were highly over-reactive in how they treated protesters, but that doesn't surprise you at this point, does it?

• In other local news: Last week saw Oregon's highest new case count for COVID-19 since the pandemic started. That tracks with national trends: Yesterday was the first day that over 100,000 Americans tested positive for the virus.

• Looking for more analysis of local election results? The Mercury team has a deep-dive here. The main takeaway: While Portland voters rejected most left-leaning candidates, progressive ballot measures fared better.

• One of the biggest progressive victories from Tuesday night is the passage of Oregon State Ballot Measure 110, which will decriminalize possession of small amounts of hard drugs. Proponents of the measure want to see the law go into effect early next year—but state lawmakers are warning that it may take a couple legislative sessions to transition away from the current criminal justice and addiction recovery model. That's because this is the first statewide law of its kind to pass—meaning Oregon is working without a blueprint. The Oregonian has more details.

• Sarah Iannarone lost the Portland mayoral race—but in a heartfelt concession speech delivered last night, she promised that she wouldn't disappear from civic life in Portland. She also urged her supporters to continuing holding Mayor Ted Wheeler accountable.

Bad news: As you probably could have guessed, international election observers say that Trump's attempted coup questioning of the election results harms public trust in our democracy! We can see that happening very clearly in Arizona, where Trump supporters are protesting outside the elections office:

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Good news: This is, in the scheme of things, a very small win—but it is fun to look at Trump's Twitter feed and see that the social media company is actually making it a little bit harder to see his lies. I never, ever share screenshots of Trump tweets, but I'll make an exception for these: