Westlund will be on the ballot

It looks like Senator Ben Westlund's signature-gathering effort is proceeding as expected. Over at Loaded Orygun, they're reporting that he has now crossed the threshold of 18,368 signatures. Of course, they'll continue to collect more - in order to ensure that he gets the required number of valid signatures.

Bend, OR- (July 14, 2006) State Senator Ben Westlund (I), Independent candidate for Governor announced today that the campaign has gathered 18,390 signatures. Westlund must submit 18,368 valid signatures by the end of August to qualify for the ballot.

Of course, there's not much suspense here. The Westlund campaign has been claiming for weeks that they'll easily make the ballot. As campaign manager Stacey Dycus told the Statesman-Journal:

"We are going to make the ballot. The question is not if but when," she said.

Discuss.

Comments

  • (Show?)

    I made a comment to this effect at Loaded, and I'll repeat it here: it's premature to say he will be on the ballot. The campaign has gathered just enough signatures to make the ballot, but some percentage of those will be ruled ineligible. With a month to go, the campaign has reason to feel confident, but they ain't there yet.

  • (Show?)

    A quick correction if I may.

    We're not reporting that Westlund WILL BE on the ballot. We're reporting that the Westlund campaign has met their initial goal of getting 18,360 signatures. They will need to keep working to overcome the number of sigs that will be tossed out by the Secretary of State for various reasons.

    Its my estimation that they will get on the ballot given the number of sigs they've been able to gather since Democracy Resources shifted to gathering their sigs and away from ballot initiatives.

  • (Show?)

    Right. But Westlund is saying that he WILL BE on the ballot - and they're now on the home stretch. No surprise. We always knew it would be a relatively easy thing to get 18,000 signatures - especially with such a low turnout primary.

  • (Show?)

    Ditto to Carla. It's anyone's guess what the failure rate will be on those signatures, given the invalidity of sigs from partisan primary voters--something initiatives don't have to worry about.

    Will they make their 30,000? Unless there was something unusual about their abilities the past 10 days (when they collected about 12,000 of their current total), you have to think the answer is yes.

    The question is, how many will they need? If they can keep their failure rate below 40%, 30,000 should be enough. But one has to expect that their rate will be as low as (or worse) than the worst performers in the initiative gatherings, which in the early turn in averaged about 35% failure. It could be close.

    To sum: will they make their goal? Most likely. Will it get them on the ballot? Unknown.

  • Clack (unverified)
    (Show?)

    A happy day for Ron Saxton.

  • Tip Credit (unverified)
    (Show?)

    With the Restaurant Association paying for the signatures it is very likely they will make the ballot. Why would the Restaurants help Ben? Because he supported rolling back the minimum wage. And yes it was after the cancer. HE’S not a Progressive.

  • (Show?)

    Tip Credit:

    I heard the rumor on the ORA funding Westlund's signatures. I also heard the same thing about the Grand Rhonde Tribe.

    I spent quite a good measure of time this week tracking down both of those rumors and I can find nothing to substantiate either of them. If you've got something that does, I'd really love to see it. Please feel free to drop me an email.

  • JHL (unverified)
    (Show?)

    Hey Tip Credit... Is that true? Where's you hear that?

  • (Show?)

    Tip Credit:

    I heard the rumor on the ORA funding Westlund's signatures. I also heard the same thing about the Grand Rhonde Tribe.

    I spent quite a good measure of time this week tracking down both of those rumors and I can find nothing to substantiate either of them. If you've got something that does, I'd really love to see it. Please feel free to drop me an email.

  • David (unverified)
    (Show?)

    Westlund was a co-sponsor of SB 451 in the 2005 Session (http://www.leg.state.or.us/05reg/measures/sb0400.dir/sb0451.intro.html) as well as SB 452 (http://www.leg.state.or.us/05reg/measures/sb0400.dir/sb0452.intro.html) which would have collectively allowed a lower wage to be paid to those under 18 and established a tip credit.

  • (Show?)

    David, I don't believe that was the part of the post that was being questioned. The question is whether Grande Ronde and ORA are financing Westlund's sig gathering. Seems possible, but just unlikely enough that I'm not going to believe it just because some anonymous poster on the Internet says it's so. Especially not on a board that's been so harsh on Westlund.

    (I was told by a "reliable source" that the sigs were all gathered by the Anti-Irish Coalition, pass it on...)

  • Progvoice (unverified)
    (Show?)

    Well I think you ought to look at who is coordinating the paid effort to collect signatures, Ted Blazak. The guy that carried all the unions measures and only qualified one.

    Chew on that one a bit, and think who might be supporting what.

  • Buckman Res (unverified)
    (Show?)

    If I were Mr. Westlund and his supporters I wouldn’t throw a “we made the ballot” party just yet. Bill Bradbury is still Secretary of State, still a Democrat, and has shown no qualms when it comes to keeping third party candidates off the ballot who threaten Democratic Party candidates.

    Remember the lengths he went to in order to deny Ralph Nader a place on the ‘04 ballot. My money’s on Bradbury to keep this a Kulongoski vs. Saxton race.

  • Betsy (unverified)
    (Show?)

    Progvoice--

    In addition to circulating petitions for Westlund and failing to qualify the progressive labor initiatives he was carrying, Blazak has also championed the highly progressive causes of: med-mal tort reform (Measure 35), ending voter-owned elections in Portland, and casinos, casinos, casinos.

    Right... a true progressive.

  • (Show?)

    Buckman -- Why would Democrats want Westlund off the ballot? With two Republicans in the race (plus Mary Starrett), the right side of the ballot splits all over the place.

    Sure, some early polling showed Ben pulling votes from Ted, but his name ID is still nowhere. Voters are going to figure out real fast that Ben might have changed his voter reg form, but he's still got Republican values. Maybe moderate Republican values, but still more elephant than donkey.

  • (Show?)

    I have to think internally, Westlund's campaign is shooting for 30,000 signatures minimum. That's just a guess of course. If they certified 60% that would get them there.

    Maybe torridjoe is right, with the law the way it is, he could be facing a much lower rate closer to 40-50%. That means he'd need 36,000-45,000.

    I think the Westlund camp is premature in their celebration...

  • Mister T (unverified)
    (Show?)

    I'll bet a case of PBR that Bradbury disqualifies a sufficient number of signatures to keep Westlund off the ballot. And I would say that even if he gets 30,000 signatures.

    It's his nature.

  • progvoice (unverified)
    (Show?)

    Betsy-

    Too true, but the unions support the casino, they landed contracts to build.

    The Unions are also no friend of Voter-Owned Elections.

  • (Show?)

    David, Stacey's told me long ago 30K was their nut to make, in their minds. So you're absolutely right that they're looking for 60% or better.

    As long as I'd paid DR all that money, I agree with you that they need to double what they have to feel safe.

  • (Show?)

    Kari--Is it really just you and me who thinks the way you discuss? Ted gets the entire left half (minus Green) and into the center. On the other side you have the usual fringe suspects, plus Starrett. That pushes Ron leftward from the jump, but he always intended to run on his Portland cred anyway. Except now here he is moving to the left, and all of a sudden he bumps into Westlund camping out on the border. Dude's boxed in!

    By the same turn, however, the mere fact that Saxton is competing for what Westlund has to consider his base--right center--immensely complicates his positioning. On pure partisan number crunching, he has no real shot and contributes only to elevating Ted. Westlund's people are hoping he can shatter the entire ideological frame of the race and make it about personality. Been done, but it's a tall order.

    So taking the odds and betting he can't do it, I repeat: On pure partisan number crunching, he has no real shot and contributes only to elevating Ted. Not Ron, Ted.

    IMO :)

  • (Show?)

    Actually Progvoice. AFSCME (A union and pretty politically active if I don't say so myself) supported voter-own-elections. In fact we supported two candidates that used the system legally Fritz and Sten.

  • LT (unverified)
    (Show?)

    Voters are going to figure out real fast that Ben might have changed his voter reg form, but he's still got Republican values. Maybe moderate Republican values, but still more elephant than donkey.

    So, in a state with close to a quarter of the voters registering outside major party, we still have the bipolar "elephant or donkey" in our politics?

    I went to the Westlund event in Salem this week. One of my friends there is a former Democrat (we talked about the spaghetti sauce we made for a post-primary unity event well over 20 years ago) and in talking to the folks there I learned that Ben attracted the support of a former moderate Republican legislator and a former Democratic legislator within about a week of each other.

    The people at the event were definitely "purple", incl. young people who'd worked on previous partisan campaigns, 2 generations of some families, people who were there because they were friends of Ben from some former activity.

    Too many past elections have come down to human factors rather than number crunching--the 2004 Bush/Hooley voters I know, the generally Republican friend who voted for Kitzhaber over Smith because he was impressed when Kitzhaber spoke to Rotary and had a lot more substance than Smith who came across as "just another slick politician". But you can bet such folks who make indiv. decisions which can sway close elections are not spending much time in July talking about candidates for Gov.

  • (Show?)

    we still have the bipolar "elephant or donkey" in our politics?

    Yes. Or, is there some other kind of framework that makes sense to you? Even Westlund is operating within the blue/red framework - he's just trying to split the difference and call himself purple. He's wrong, and it won't work, but there's not some other kind of framework.

    The only place where you'll see THREE separate ideological positions is in urban growth (metro) politics. There, you have the pave-the-earth folks (sprawl is good! density is bad! no ugb!), the smart growth people (sprawl is bad! density is good! save the ugb!), and the no-growthers (sprawl bad! density bad! we have no basic math skills!)

  • Jacko (unverified)
    (Show?)

    AFSCME? Isn't that the union that got Portland's African American police chief fired for having a Clintonesque relationship with a junior employee? A white woman? Oh my. Why did the union feel so threatened by this police chief?

    Nobody was coerced when Foxworth wrote verse. Hester the Jester can only fester.

  • listensecond (unverified)
    (Show?)

    It is as irresponsible of jacko to basically call AFSCME racist as it is responsible of AFSCME to support Portland's Voter-Owned Elections system, which among other things, is going to lead to more opportunity for women and minorities to meaningfully compete in local elections.

  • Jacko (unverified)
    (Show?)

    Those women and minorities really crushed the incumbent white men the first time around. Thanks to Voter Owned Elections. Hurray!

    <h2>I hope I live long enough to see a good ol' incumbent white man deposed by a woman or person of color.</h2>
elsewhere

connect with blueoregon