The Oregon secretary of state has repudiated the nation Republican Party’s effort to include on official voter pamphlets a statement challenging the state’s Democratic leadership because it was allegedly submitted 29 seconds after the Aug. 25 deadline.
The statement was named “Had Enough? Vote Republican, ” and contained recent examples of Democratic management in the nation, drawing attention to the “unrestrained rioting, ruin, and violence in Portland, ” the state’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic and its effect on small businesses, and the unemployment level.
Laura Fosmire, a spokesperson for Republican Secretary of State Bev Clarno, told the Associated Press in a statement this week: “Anyone wishing to submit information to the Voters’ Pamphlet has two or more weeks to do so and we recommend evading waiting until the last minute for this reason.”( According to Oregon Public Broadcasting, Clarno is the only Republican in statewide office, and was appointed to fill a vacancy that, by statute, the Democratic governor had to fill with a Republican .)
The Oregon Republican Party has denied that the voter pamphlet statement was submitted late, and has filed individual complaints against the Secretary of State’s office.
“We can prove that it was submitted accurately and are taking legal action to challenge and find a reversal of this horrible decision by the Elections Division, ” said Oregon GOP Chairman Bill Currier. “The voters of Oregon are entitled to fair and impartial administration of our electoral system. Excluding the Republican voters pamphlet statement reeks of partisan discrimination.”
“We question the inexplicable delay in informing us of this rejection and are deeply concerned about the motivation and goal of depriving voters of this information for such a momentous election, ” said Currier in a statement Thursday. “If a bureaucrat in some decision-making role simply didn’t like what our statement said, this doesn’t give them the human rights of silence us.”
Kevin Hoar, communications director for the Oregon Republican Party, told OPB that the online system to submit the voter statement was glitching the day of the deadline, which impeded the state party’s ability to file. Fosmire, the secretary of state’s spokesperson, has denied that flaws contributed to the delay, saying there weren’t any and that the bureau simply received the statement after the filing deadline.”
Currier said on Thursday that Oregon was simply full of bureaucratic systems that don’t run, such as the unemployment system, and accused the state of trying to blame citizens for its own failures yet again.
“If this decision is not overruled, the exclusion of the Oregon Republican Party proclamation would amount to unequal, arbitrary, and capricious treatment of Oregon Republicans by a commonwealth organization. This therapy immediately harms the public interest and transgresses their civil right. It is the selective silencing of certain voices, ” said Currier.
“Had enough of being stillness? ” he said. “Your voice, the voice of the people, must be heard now.”
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