Here in the great evergreen-and-gray metropolis of Portland, Ore., we like to think of our city as a thriving wonderland of forward thinking. We prefer our urban planning carefully considered, our light-rail and bicycle routes plentiful, our indie musicians erudite and inscrutable, and our movie theaters stocked with beer—progressive policies, all. So when we kicked off 2009 by swearing in Sam Adams, as the first openly gay mayor of a major American city, the occasion left a lot of us pretty pleased with our nonchalant open-mindedness: "Oh, did we just make civil rights history? Funny, we weren't even paying attention." But the back-patting didn't last long. Within weeks of taking office, Portland's new mayor found himself embroiled in a scandal so lurid and combustible that it resembles a plotline from The Young and the Restless. Which now leaves Portland as an innovator of something quite different. The Adams imbroglio may be the first true 21st-century political sex scandal: one that only a gay politician could survive.