OFFICIAL ORP NEWS RELEASE
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 – 06:00 PDT
Twisted Interpretation by Kate Brown Wreaks Last-minute Election Havoc
Lake Oswego, OR – “It is shocking and unfortunate that Secretary of State Kate Brown is playing politics with the election process,” said Oregon Republican Party Chair Allen Alley. Brown made an abrupt, late decision to interpret a 2009 statute, which resulted in moving the election for Commissioner of the Bureau of Labor and Industries from the May 2012 Primary Election to the November 2012 General Election.
As late as March 19th, the Secretary of State’s own website designated the race as a May Primary Election contest. Candidates who had clearly filed for the primary race weeks and months in advance were blindsided by her sudden, last-minute announcement.
“Brown’s interpretation twists the legislation’s intent and bears the stink of political
corruption. This is just another example of the public union machine controlling politics in Oregon with Chicago-style tactics,” said Chairman Alley.
The 2009 statute clearly intended to change the year this office was elected to the same year as the Governor’s race. It was not intended to change the month in which the election was held. Nothing in the statute does away with the longstanding precedent of holding the non-partisan contest in the May Primary election, which is required to send two nominees on to the General election, if more than two candidates filed.
“What is Brown afraid of – a fair race? Are her union backers so worried about losing this race in May,” asked Alley, “that they are willing to corrupt the entire election process?
“All Oregonians should stand shoulder to shoulder with Republicans against this clear perversion of our state’s election process. Enough is enough with politically motivated stunts aimed at skewing election results. And the Secretary of State, who is tasked with overseeing our elections for fairness and equity, should be especially criticized for this violation of the public’s trust and dereliction of duty.”
A complaint has been formally filed in Marion County Circuit Court to review Brown’s decision.
“Oregonians should demand nothing less than a fair, impartial election process,” concluded Chairman Alley.