A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Voters’ Pamphlet: We’re in trouble

Written April 20th, 2016 by Hasso Hering
It's nice that they mail you the Voters' Pamphlet. Too bad about the contents.

It’s nice that they mail you the Voters’ Pamphlet. Too bad about the contents.

As if to spoil a perfectly fine and pleasantly warm spring day, the Oregon Voters’ Pamphlet arrived on Tuesday, a reminder of the dismal state of our long-running experiment with self-government.

There on the pages, smiling at us, are some of the same people who have been in federal office for more than 30 years and are still calling for various reforms such as closing loopholes for job-exporting corporations (Wyden) or making higher incomes subject to Social Security taxes (DeFazio). As though electing them one more time will enable them to do something they haven’t managed to do since the 1980s.

And there, on other pages, are the same challengers who have tried more than once to unseat our delegates in Washington, D.C.  They were unable to do so before, for various reasons. And this time is going to be different why?

The pamphlet is full of platitudes but almost no information. It would be far more useful to many voters if candidates were required to disclose some actual data about themselves, such as age, address, and main sources of income. (Hillary lists her occupation as a “former secretary of state and presidential candidate;” that’s an occupation?)

I did discover one info-nugget: You don’t have to provide any identification when registering to vote by mail or online. You’re supposed to, of course, and you can do so by supplying a driver’s license or ID or permit number or part of your Social Security number. But if you don’t have any of those, you can substitute something else, like a copy of a utility bill or a paycheck stub.  If you can’t produce even that, you can still register. Says the pamphlet: “If you do not provide valid identification, you will not be eligible to vote for federal races. You will, however, still be eligible to vote for state and local contests.”

Once ballots are removed from their return envelopes back at the election office, they are secret. Which makes me wonder how they inspect the ballots of non-ID’d voters to check that they didn’t cast a federal vote. (hh)

12 responses to “Voters’ Pamphlet: We’re in trouble”

  1. Bob Woods says:

    Many decades ago I was a deputy voter registrar. The requirement to register to vote was to give your word and swear to your eligibility. That was it.

    No one has been able to show any credible evidence that there is any systemic voter fraud in the United States.The cases are stunningly few and far between.


  2. GregB says:

    Funny you should write about this subject this morning. I too read thru the pamphlet last night and have some of the same feelings you do. It’s a upsetting situation us citizens are in and it appears to be a slippery slope we are on with no rescue in sight.

  3. Jim Engel says:

    Well, dog-gone! Let’s invite ‘Lil Kim Jung to come over & straighten us out! That’s about what we have under the guise of a democratic republic we have now. I’ve been a long supporter of 3 terms & “you’re out”. Works for baseball! Our own City council has gotten so stale with members from the last century!… JE

  4. hj.anony1 says:

    We are in trouble! We have been in trouble. But not for reasons you state, HH. Well put Bob btw,

    We’ve been in trouble with all the corporate & billionaire class money influencing our “democracy”. In fact, democracy is the wrong term for what we have. Oligarchy fits much better. Don’t you think?

    Oligarchy : a small group of people having control of a country, organization, or institution.

  5. tom cordier says:

    There is one candidate running for office in Benton County, who is not your typical politician. He has actively pursued government accountability and isn’t afraid to speak his mind on tough issues. He is the guy that challenged the unanimous council vote and ran a referendum campaign that allowed Corvallis voters to defeat the parking ordinance. Paul Cauthorn is truly independently minded and the community is lucky to have him running for County Commissioner, Position 3. If he doesn’t show up on your primary ballot, write him in anyways. http://www.oregon-first.com

  6. Bob Woods says:

    And just remember that the picture ID requirements have been a demand of the Republican Party, as part of their ongoing attempts to suppress the vote. It’s been going on for decades.

    • Bill Kapaun says:

      So Bob, weeding out illegal voters is “suppressing” the vote.
      I think that says it all about you.

      • hj.anony1 says:

        Oh thank goodness for Oregon’s vote by mail ! Nothing says voter suppression like standing in long lines …for hours …..to cast a vote.

        Those “red” states sure do know how to weed out the illegals.

      • Bob Woods says:

        Show the evidence to prove all the illegal voters, instead of displaying your hallucinations.

    • HowlingCicada says:

      I celebrated 4/20 by re-registering as a Republican, because this year they’re more fun than a barrel of monkeys and a legal grown-in-Oregon joint combined. Last day to register is April 26.

      Just before the final button, after having been asked whether or not you are a U.S. citizen, is this warning (in part):
      “””By clicking on the “Submit Registration” button I swear or affirm that I am qualified to be an elector and I have told the truth on this registration.”””

      “””Attention: If you submit this registration and know it to be false, you can be fined up to $125,000 and/or jailed for up to 5 years.”””

      If Republicans were concerned about illegal voters, they would advocate for the vigorous and publicly hyped enforcement of laws like that, instead of diversions like picture ID and repealing vote-by-mail.

      Maybe they’re really concerned about something else; good clues can be heard on Mark Levin’s show.

      • hj.anony1 says:

        Mark Levin …..bwaaahahaha! No thank you or any of that readily available right wing hate radio / tv.

        Howling, you touch on an interesting point though. What is it they are really concerned about? Guarantee it’s a combo of Money & Power. Let me save someone a response and state that YES, that applies to both ‘pubs and Dems.


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