With just a week to go before the May 15 primary election, voter turnout is tepid.
Figures from the Oregon secretary of state elections division show that through May 7, just 8.6 percent of eligible voters have returned their ballots.
In Multnomah County, it's just under eight percent.
Part of the issue might be an absence of heat at the top of the ticket. Incumbent Gov. Kate Brown, a Democrat, faces only token opposition. State Rep. Knute Buehler (R-Bend), the leading contender for the GOP gubernatorial nomination, faces more competition from conservatives Greg Wooldridge and Sam Carpenter but neither of them has raised enough money generate a statewide media blitz.
Turnout in 2014—also a non-presidential election year—was 35.9 percent. It's probably going to be lower than that this year, because the automatic voter registration law that went into effect Jan. 1 2016 has increased the number of registered voters dramatically.
In the May 2014 primary, there were 2.11 million registered voters eligible to vote. As of the end of April 2018, there are 2.68 million eligible voters, an increase of 27 percent.
Ballots must be received by elections officials by 8 pm on May 15 to be counted.