The Library Basement
Reading under ground

Thanks for (almost) nothing, Oregon GOP

A few weeks back I received a letter from the Oregon Secretary of State, informing me that:

The Republican Party has decided to allow non-affiliated voters to vote for the office of Attorney General, Secretary of State, and State Treasurer in this Primary Election.

All I had to do was respond to get the GOP primary ballot, so I did. Of course this does not include the presidential primary nor the state nor federal congressional primaries. Yet I thought this a positive development, since I am on the whole supportive of "open" primaries, not getting to vote in many since I am not a member of a political party.

It was to my dismay that upon opening the special GOP ballot I found almost nobody to vote for. One candidate is running unopposed for the Secretary of State position, and no candidates are filed for the other two races. Thank you, Oregon Republican Party, for extending to me the special invitation to cast a ballot of zero consequence.

(I know that it is not the party's fault per se that nobody filed for the races, and that they probably did not know the contents of the ballot when they extended the primary to non-affiliated voters.)

This seems to be a great opportunity for run-off style open primaries. The Democrats are internally contesting two of these three positions. Why not let the whole of Oregon vote on the entire slate of candidates? It seems silly to segregate the primaries by party when even the primaries are uncontested.

Category: politics