September 22nd, 2008 5:33 pm | by NIGEL JAQUISS News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, Politics

Secretary Of State Race: Dancer is Alone in Supporting Open Primary


  • Rick Dancer

Last week the Portland Tribune released a poll that showed voters have not yet tuned into November's Secretary of State race, where Democrat Kate Brown, Republican Rick Dancer and Seth Woolley of the Pacific Green Party are battling to replace term-limited incumbent Bill Bradbury.

The Trib's numbers showed that "undecided" led all candidates with 38 percent of respondents, while Brown led Dancer 33 percent to 25 percent.

Well, here's one distinction that might help all those undecided voters.

In a WW endorsement interview last week, Dancer did say he is the only one of the three candidates who supports Measure 65, the open-primary ballot initiative put forth by former Secretaries of State Norma Paulus (a Republican) and Phil Keisling (a Democrat).

"Greater participation in our primary election is only fair," Dancer says. "It will increase participation and lead to greater dialogue among Oregonians."

Dancer's position on the initiative is noteworthy, since the Secretary of State is Oregon's top elections official and would be responsible for implementing the measure if it passes.

It's also worth noting that both major parties and most Oregon unions oppose the measure, so Dancer's taking a risk. He would also like to make the Secretary of State a non-partisan office, which at least in theory could make the legislative redistricting that the Secretary of State performs every decade (next in 2010) a less contentious process.
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