Sam Adams is the current mayor of the city of Portland, Oregon, an office he entered into in January of 2009. He was elected in the May 2008 primary, gaining a majority of the vote in one of Portland's usual 12-way mayoral races to avoid a run-off election in November.
Before his election to mayor, he was a City Councilman, and before that he was Chief of Staff to Vera Katz, another recent Portland mayor. He was seemingly anointed and groomed for the job of mayor, and after Tom Potter's somewhat lackluster term, enough Portlanders seemed to want to return to the Katz way of doing business to get him elected. Adams, like Katz, is a policy wonk, with strong leanings towards environmental development and leftist politics, but not so strong of leanings to offend a large segment of the business community. Oh yeah, and Adams is also openly gay, something that in Portland, in this century is not particularly newsworthy. Adams says that, after all, potholes certainly aren't gay or straight.
Of course, in a really small big city like Portland, rumors about what people may or may not have done can certainly spread quickly. During Adams' campaign for mayor, a rumor surfaced that there may have been an inappropriate relationship with a young man who he had been in a mentoring relationship with. Adams quickly denied it up down and sideways, and coasted to an easy victory. Except, a few days after taking office, it turned out that he did indeed have a relationship with the young man---after the young man had turned 18, of course. Besides, of course, a little bit of kissing in a City Hall bathroom, but that doesn't constitute a sexual relationship. Quickly, the entire city of Portland went into a froth of controversy that consisted of a rapid-fire exchange of cliches about homophobia, the public trust and personal vs. public behavior. Currently, Adams seems to be holding on to his job, but six months after his inauguration, Oregon law allows a recall petition against him. Meanwhile, Adams is trying to continue on with his agenda, that consists of using the words bicycle, green and sustainable as much as possible.
Where do I guess this is going to go? If I had to pick a guess, I would say that by the time the recall is authorized, there won't be quite enough public furor over Adams to go through with it. But about two years from now, it will turn out that the Adams who didn't tell the truth about his private life has also not been totally honest about exactly what developers provided input into his plans to provide green jobs to the creative class. But of course, I am more than a little biased about the type of smarmy, smug centric policies that Vera Katz and her cronies promote.