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If this dog can vote AND hold up a sign WHILE wearing a cap... so can you!
If this dog can vote AND hold up a sign WHILE wearing a cap... so can you! Photoboyko / Getty Images

GOOD AFTERNOON, PORTLAND! Now, I don't want you to panic, but... PANIC!!! A SUPER-DUPER IMPORTANT ELECTION IS TOMORROW, AND OH GOD YA GOTTA VOTE, YA JUST GOTTA!!! (Lucky for you, the Mercury's election cheat sheet will help you fill out that ballot lickety-split—which sounds dirty, but isn't.) SO VOTE! But first, let's dip into some NEWS.

IN LOCAL NEWS:
• No big surprise: The state of Oregon is dreadfully lacking in public defenders right now, so it comes as no great shock that some defendants who were charged with a crime, but not given their constitutionally promised lawyers, are now suing. Our Alex Zielinski has more.

• Swinging back around to the subject of "VOTE, GODDAMNIT!!": While voter turnout was looking pretty abysmal for this primary—as is historically the case for non-presidential elections—there was a sudden and meaty bump in voters turning in ballots on Friday. And that might bring us up to numbers closer to the huge turnout in 2018. DON'T BE LEFT OUT OF THE FUN... VOTE, GODDAMNIT!!

• This Saturday, Portlanders showed up in the hundreds to speak out in favor of abortion rights and stick it to the conservative leaning SCOTUS at the Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon "Bans Off Our Bodies" rally and march. Photog Mathieu Lewis-Rolland was there and put together this amazing photo essay of great images from an inspiring day.

• This latest surge of COVID cases across the state has inspired state education officials to advise schools to follow their newest safety protocols—unless they want to go back to remote learning? (No one wants to go back to remote learning.)

• Comedian/writer Niles Abston is a goddamn busy bee, recently making a short film, writing for a very popular FX show, and touring the Pacific Northwest and trying out material for his second stand-up comedy special. And yes, he's coming to Portland's Siren Theater later this week so you should see him! Chase Hutchinson has the entertaining interview.

IN NATIONAL/WORLD NEWS:

• There's new information surrounding the tragic shooting deaths of 10 Black people at a Buffalo, New York, grocery store this past weekend, where three others were also injured. The suspected gunman was a known white supremacist who ascribed to the idiotically stupid and racist "great replacement theory" (promoted by such right wing luminaries as Tucker Carlson), and authorities have now learned the shooter had a second target in mind as well: another, perhaps even larger, store.

• She's not wrong: In response to the racist Buffalo massacre, Representative Liz Cheney has blasted her own party, saying that Republican leaders have "enabled white nationalism."

• And the racism just doesn't stop: "Shooting at Taiwanese church in California that killed 1, wounded 5 investigated as hate crime, FBI says."

• The FDA has reached an agreement with baby formula makers Abbot, allowing them to reopen a shuttered factory so they can produce enough formula to hopefully restock grocery store shelves within weeks.

• Sweden confirms their plans to join NATO, which will significantly ramp up the diplomatic pressure on Putin—who's already having to scale back his invasion of the eastern part of Ukraine due to a lack of significant progress.

• And finally... you know it’s summer on Waterfront Park when…

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