Independent Party primary election results

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

The Independent primary electorate seems to have a GOP lean, rather than an anti-incumbent lean.

Yes, it was election day today - at least for the 55,000+ voters who are registered with the Independent Party of Oregon.

2290 voters participated, making for roughly a 4% voter turnout - roughly a tenth of the turnout for the May primary. Not particularly impressive, but given the historic nature of the online-only third-party primary, still meaningful - especially for the candidates that competed.

John Kitzhaber won the gubernatorial nomination with 850 votes - over Richard Esterman (438) and Jerry Wilson (300). 314 voters wrote in a name (and according to party leader Dan Meek, 294 of those were for Chris Dudley) and 312 voted "none of the above".

In the two congressional races featuring the Democratic and Republican nominees, the two Republicans won - Scott Bruun in the 5th and Art Robinson in the 4th.

There were nine State Senate races and seven State House races where both the Democratic and Republican nominees sought the IPO nomination.

Democrats won three of the nine Senate races, and two of the seven House races. Nine of the sixteen races were won by incumbents - so it seems that the Independent primary electorate has a GOP lean, rather than an anti-incumbent lean.

Of course, a number of these elections were won with a vote margin of less than ten votes. The hotly-contested race between Senator Richard Devlin and Mary Kremer was decided 49 to 44. That's votes, not percentage. (And hey, Rep. Ben Cannon blew away his opponent in a landslide, seven votes to four.)

So, the question for our readers is this: What does this all mean? Is this a meaningful primary election? Does the Independent Party of Oregon have a future in this state? Should they?

On the jump, the full list of winners in the sixteen contested legislative races...

Complete results are available here (pdf).

Comments

  • (Show?)

    Just my opinion, but it seems to me the jury is going to be out on the importance of the IPO until the ballots are counted in November and we see if their endorsements actually translate into votes. I know that's the hypothesis in some campaigns. It would seem that an IPO endorsement would carry the most clout in swing districts, like Schrader's and in HD 30 and SD 15. I heard that Bruce Starr dropped 5K on a mailer to Independents in SD 15 and got 29 votes out of it and a loss. Shawn Lindsay is Twitting it up about his endorsement, but he ran unopposed since Edwards dropped out and Ainge wasn't nominated until a week past the filing deadline. So we'll see.

    • (Show?)

      I heard that Bruce Starr dropped 5K on a mailer to Independents in SD 15 and got 29 votes out of it and a loss

      Ouch. $172 a vote.

      But you're probably right -- campaigns will be looking to determine if having the Independent label on the ballot makes a difference in the fall.

  • (Show?)

    Oh, great. They nominate Scott Bruun, the guy who doesn't believe in unemployment insurance, Medicare, Social Security, the EPA, and a host of other things we connect with civilized life. Is this what the Independent Party of Oregon stands for?

    • (Show?)

      Kurt Schrader ran a strong campaign for our party's nomination, but in the end, I believe that Bruun sent out more pieces of mail and made more phone calls. Most of the candidates who won did so because they outworked their opponents.

      • (Show?)

        So, you have to spend more than $172 per vote?

        • (Show?)

          Turnout for party-run internet elections is low, mostly because of access issues, trust issues, and because the traditional authentication mode relies on a mailed pass code rather than things that the state could use such as SSN.

          The highest turnout for a binding internet election in US history was 6.4 percent. That was conducted by a municipal government at a much greater expense per voter.

          From my point of view, the event was a great success, despite the annoyances.

          This was the first binding statewide election held in the United States to be conducted entirely over the internet.

          This was easily the largest election ever held by a minor political party in Oregon.

          More people voted and more candidates participated than for any other minor party election in Oregon history.

          And, of course, the whole point of fusion voting is to encourage major party candidates to communicate with our members, so from that standpoint: "Mission accomplished".

          Thanks for covering the election.

  • (Show?)

    Bill, I think it very difficult to draw any statewide conclusion from a 4% voter turnout. I'm glad that this party (reluctant to call them 'Independent') is trying something new. However let's get serious, the vote is hardly representative.

  • (Show?)

    When we first moved here from California, we declared ourselves Independents. After one or two elections, we moved ourselves over to the "D's" because we couldn't stand the freaky robo-calls from freaky people. Honestly, not one Dem called us to woo our vote, but PLENTY of Republicans and early predecessors of teabaggers called us. So it doesn't surprise me that Scott Bruun won it. But Robinson?? Does the Independent Party have NO standards??

    • (Show?)

      This is fusion voting, but only in a "sorta" form. In full-on fusion, a candidate w/ multiple nominations will have an voting oval for each party. In the Oregon form, the candidate will have each party of nomination listed, but only 1 voting oval. So, essentially, even after the election, there will be no direct evidence to indicate if a voter is preferring the Indy nomination or not.

      I certainly support fusion voting - and would absolutely support separate lines for each party nomination of a candidate (and I'd allow as many lines as there are nominations.)

      • Larry Lefty, Democrat
      • Larry Lefty, Working Families
      • Larry Lefty, Independent Party
      • Richie Rightie, Republican
      • Richie Rightie, Constitution
      • Eddie Enviro, Green
      • Lucy Libby, Libertarian

      Just count up the separate lines and report the totals. Determine the winner based on the combined total.

      Sounds great to me.

      And then, just make it easier to create minor parties (as long as they're governed democratically, unlike some minor parties in New York), and make it easier for unaffiliated candidates to get on the ballot.

      • (Show?)

        I'm with you there, Kari. True Fusion voting is a powerful tool for the voter, in that we can say WHY we support a particular candidate more by supporting them on a separate line of a party with a particular philosophy.

  • (Show?)

    I know Kari, kinda scary to me as well :-)

  • (Show?)

    Allow me to differ with a few of the statements offered by Carla KC Hanson.

    She says "Conducting an online primary in a state that requires paper ballots is a unique stretch of the law." The State does not require paper ballots for minor party elections. The State does not require any ballots at all and does not require any minor party elections at all. Minor party nominating decisions are typically made by a few party leaders or by a convention attended by maybe 1% of the party's membership at best. Our election involved probably 20-fold people than any minor party convention in Oregon. And I would expect turnout in the future to rise significantly, as the candidates and the press take it more seriously.

    She says, "the privatization of their primary is pretty ironic." "Private" is the only way that a minor party in Oregon can have a primary election. State law does not allow the government to conduct or pay for a minor party primary election. While the government pays millions of dollars to conduct primary elections for the Democrats and Republicans, it pays zero for any minor party. So the alternative to "privatization" is to have no election at all. We will welcome Carla's support in having the State pay for and even conduct the future primary elections of the Independent Party.

    She refers to "Multhomah County survey results." What survey? She has elsewhere refered to this as "not a scientific survey, but results gleened from campaign efforts." We have no knowledge of those results.

    She says "The IPO lacks Platform and identity." There are several thousand words about issues and positions at the Independent Party website, indparty.com. The real question is, however, who should define the party's identity? The party leaders decided that this year all of the members of the Independent Party would define its identity by choosing among an arrary of candidates in this primary election limited only by a candidate's timely filing of a notice to participate. "Scrambled to apply"? The form to apply was been posted on the Independent Party website since mid-2009. Any candidate who bothered to look at our website had a full year to apply. After the Democratic Party of Oregon launched its attacks against the Independent Party in May 2010, some Democrats who had applied then withdrew from our process. We did not force them to withdraw. "Pay to play controversy"? You mean the claims that a party official asked candidates to contribute toward the cost of conducting the election, as they are required by law to do to participate in government-run elections?

  • (Show?)

    (continuing . . .) As for the vote totals, she does not note the large number of "None of the Above" votes. Faced with candidates already nominated by the Democratic or Republican party, indeed many Independent Party voters rejected both, thereby reducing the vote totals for such candidates. Notably, candidates identified with any major party often did quite well. For example, Scott Reynolds defeated Lee Beyer (D nominee) in Senate District 6 by 46-18. Kevin Prociw defeated Val Hoyle (D nominee) in Representative District 14 by 26-16. Both Reynolds and Prociw are new to politics, having cut their teeth on the recent "Randy Pape Beltway" controversy in Lane County. In Representative District 45, Laura Bell came within one vote of denying the nomination to Kitty Harmon (R nominee).

    I agree with Carla that pure fusion would be a better voting system than Oregon's "fusion lite," and I so testified at the Oregon Legislature. But the Oregon Legislature was certainly not going to adopt pure fusion. Note that among the strong proponents of "fusion lite" was the Working Families Party, which can now add its party label to Democrats who meet that party's approval. Without "fusion lite," minor parties are left with nothing on the ballot but the spoiler role (at least in the eyes of dedicated major party adherents). So we are damned if we do and damned if we don't. Apparently, the only acceptable role for minor parties is to kill themselves.

    I am quite surprised that Carla describes the Independent Party efforts as "lipstick on this pig" and akin to "steaming piles of excrement." After all, having this election was what she wanted the Independent Party to do. She wrote on BlueOregon on June 3, 2010:

    "While the IPO clearly infers that the 5 member nomination board is sufficient for the third largest Oregon Party, the DPO reasonably questions if this is adequate representation of IPO Party rank and file, and formalized it's request for the SOS to intervene. In essence, while the Dems may be challenging the processes proposed by the leadership of the IPO, the DPO is actually taking action which would benefit rank and file IPO Party membership. Ironically, if the IPO was allowed to nominate (co-nominate) candidates at the behest of only its leadership, it is highly possible that the leadership would make more liberal selections than would the rank and file members. The more conservative selections that could be made by a full membership vote hardly would be in the best interests of the Democratic Party, but definitely in the best interest of democratic process."

  • (Show?)

    Correction to my last post:

    Notably, candidates NOT identified with any major party often did quite well.

    • (Show?)

      A couple of points...

      Our members along with most of our candidates seem pleased with how we are rolling out our 2010 agenda.

      Here's what one of them told Think Out Loud:

      Here's the hope that the Independent party excited in me: a party that listens through online polling..."listening" being the key word here. Of course both Republicans and Democrats currently use polls and surveys to extract information in order to carve off demographic groups with hot-button issues - but that's not listening. Listening is empathetic. Listening is digressive. Listening enables understanding. Listening leads to problem-solving. What I like about the Independent party is that they are attempting to listen to a wide variety of viewpoints through the use of an online survey. We'll see what the Independent Party does with the information, but I'm hopeful that they will build a political movement that is radically different because it listens more than it talks. And if this works, both parties might learn a lesson...and Oregonians might get the representation that we deserve.

      Anyhow, our members who are paying attention get it. People from other parties who are not a part of our community don't.

      I can live with that.

  • (Show?)

    It's interesting how difficult it is for some people to get their heads around the notion that we would try to build a party that seeks to find common ground among people with a diverse set of political and ideological viewpoints.

    It's as though they cannot even imagine a world that doesn't involve attacking the other side, playing the blame game, and dividing the electorate by focusing on hot button social issues.

    God forbid that a political party should work to try to build consensus in this country rather than trying to tear us apart.

    • (Show?)

      Consensus? Good gawd Sal, your voters are all over the place in terms of who they support, and most didn't even care enough to indicate a preference at all. Indeed, where is that "common ground" amidst the diversity of opinion and political beliefs, and is that a realistic goal for a Party or rather, a goal for those who govern.

      Who ARE you and what does your Party stand for?

      • (Show?)

        CARLA: Indeed, where is that "common ground" amidst the diversity of opinion and political beliefs, and is that a realistic goal for a Party or rather, a goal for those who govern.

        SAL: That's what we're going to find out. Three things are going to drive this party's agenda: The candidates and the commitments they make to our members, the policy initiatives our members who choose to participate tell us they want the party to focus on, and the good government issues on which the party was founded and which have broad support among our membership and the general public both at a state and a national level.

        One thing is certain, our nominees will have the opportunity to find common ground with one another and with our members. More than anything, the potential for that communication -- which is sorely needed right now -- is what is so threatening to some folks.

        God forbid someone should provide a context for Democrats and Republicans to find some common ground and pursue a common agenda -- no matter how narrowly focused that common ground or agenda may be.

        As for participation... if the election had been administered by the state, or if we had even been permitted to charge the same filing fee that candidates pay to participate in major party nominating processes in Oregon of for the nominating processes in most jurisdictions where the state does not pay for party primary elections, we could have dramatically improved turnout.

        Nevertheless, this remains the largest minor party election in Oregon history. It is the first binding statewide internet primary election in US history. And it is the first primary election in Oregon where candidates from every political party had an opportunity to participate.

        As for the election results... some results were very disappointing to me personally. But what can I say? It's an open process. Candidates competed on a level playing field, and by-in-large, those who worked the hardest won the nomination.

        • (Show?)

          One other general comment to Carla...

          You are chair of the Multnomah Democrats. Do you honestly believe that our voting members are totally blind to it when you criticize their intelligence or otherwise trash the party? These people voted on the internet and they are mostly 4 of 4 and 5 of 5 voters.

          Do you really believe that Republican operatives didn't use your comments and the well-publicized attacks by others to hurt perceptions of Democratic candidates in our election? Do you think they won't bring these things up again in the general election?

          As chair of the Mult Dems, your job is to elect Democrats. Your public actions have done nothing but hurt Democratic candidates in our election and continue to hurt the perception of Democrats with Independent Party members and with folks who see themselves as "independents".

          Kurt Schrader lost by 26 votes, meaning that if 14 people vote differently, he would have won. There is every reason to suppose that well-publicized Democratic attacks against our party played a role in his defeat.

          Think about it.

  • (Show?)

    Independent Party leadership (as opposed to Dems and Repubs) is almost required by circumstances to remain neutral on traditional issues. Their job seems to be to nurture, collate results, and drive for more voter participation.

    If they try to drive debate, they will instantly become cynical manipulators, which is sorta like what Freedom Works is to the Tea Party.

    If they can retain their rep for rough neutrality, while building participant/voter numbers, Sal's synthesis argument could wind up being central to new and untainted policy directions that might be useful to breaking the stale old two party logjams that we're all used to.

    • (Show?)

      Pat

      You say that leaders should not try to drive debate, and if they are,that they are "cynical manipulators." I though leadership meant that you actually try to LEAD, try to convince a set of citizens about a particular set of policy proposals.

      Even Sal admits that the party's agenda will be "driven" by "common ground" (shared policy agreement) between candidates (leaders) and voters.

      And Sal admits that there IS at least one set of coherent policy positions for the party--"good government" which translates into positions in favor of voter-owned elections, non-partisan redistricting, etc. These are all policy positions that the party leadership has taken.

      I don't know what "new and untainted policy directions" means. Tainted by what? By the attempts of candidates to appeal to voters?

      If the leaders of the IPO continue to just "collate results" then the party will go no where. If and until the party has a recognizable brand label that citizens begin to associate with a set of coherent policy positions, it will be nothing more than a protest party against anti-incumbent spirit.

      And the latter will fade as soon as the economy improves. Being anti this and anti that is not a formula for success, as the long history of protest parties shows.

      • (Show?)

        If the Independent Party were merely a protest party, then its leaders would not have pushed for reforms that encourage established major party candidates to reach out to our members, nor would we be attempting to use the party as a vehicle to encourage greater collaboration between Democrats and Republicans.

        Though it is true that much of our growth is attributable to disillusionment with the major parties - one in three Americans now believes that a third major party is needed -- I am much less sanguine than you that this sense of frustration will simply "fade away" anytime soon given the actions of our political leaders.

        It's a bit of a strawman to suggest that we have not promoted very coherent policy positions. The party has consistently taken positions that are intended to increase citizen participation in government, reduce special interest influence over the legislative process, and increase government transparency. All three of these general areas are strongly supported by our membership and the general public.

        On other kinds of more substantive policy decisions, I disagree that leadership should involve anything other than listening to our members, responding to what they tell us, and encouraging our candidates to do the same.

        I will be glad to share with you the broad strokes of our approach to these surveys, if only so that one political scientist in the state will actually have some familiarity with what we are doing before they comment on it publicly.

    • (Show?)

      Maybe I'm confused but I always think that organized political Parties, be they Democratic, Republican, Socialist, Green, Working Family and yes, Independent, should have some type of Platform or Statement of Identity that they can rally around and which influences their endorsements and votes. Otherwise, how do you get anything done? It sounds more like the Independent Party in Oregon is trying to behave like true independents and just make it up as they go along, changing with whichever way the wind blows depending on how their participating members at the time are voting. I simply don't think one can be "neutral" on the major issues facing our state and country and still try to enact change within it.

      And the leadership of the Party, again whichever Party we're talking about, would need to work toward those common, agreed upon values. Or else they really aren't leading but simply following their participant's current whims. What happens when the membership votes to go in a direction that the majority of the leadership disagrees with? You can't lead by waiting for others to tell you what to fight for.

      • (Show?)

        There you are mistaken. Again, listen to what our members are saying:

        Here's the hope that the Independent party excited in me: a party that listens through online polling..."listening" being the key word here. Of course both Republicans and Democrats currently use polls and surveys to extract information in order to carve off demographic groups with hot-button issues - but that's not listening. Listening is empathetic. Listening is digressive. Listening enables understanding. Listening leads to problem-solving. What I like about the Independent party is that they are attempting to listen to a wide variety of viewpoints through the use of an online survey. We'll see what the Independent Party does with the information, but I'm hopeful that they will build a political movement that is radically different because it listens more than it talks. And if this works, both parties might learn a lesson...and Oregonians might get the representation that we deserve.

        For the life of me, I can't fathom why it is so difficult to understand that the party is asking our members what they think and committing itself to:

        1) Share that information with candidates

        2) Build an agenda based on what our members are asking for

        3) Ask our candidates to do the same.

  • (Show?)

    Sal to me: " You are chair of the Multnomah Democrats. Do you honestly believe that our voting members are totally blind to it when you criticize their intelligence or otherwise trash the party? ..."

    I have not once trashed IPO members. Indeed, I was one of the folks that called attention to the IPO pondering doing its nomination process with just the IPO leadership making the call and not involving your members. That was a few months back, and memories are short.

    The fact remains that IPO voting members were all over the map in terms of who they supported, which underlines the fact that as a Party, you have little common ground among membership. The idea of "creating consensus" is an illusion, and political BS. You have simply cast a wide net for membership and drawn folks in by using the Indy term. My defining them as disgruntled is not any criticism of intelligence, just a plain fact. (And particularly with those of the progressive persuasion, I get it.)

    It's you that's being disrespectful to your membership by both the initial prospects of the small cabal deciding the nomination, and you further it by pumping this touchy-feely garbage down our throats. For the most part, folks join Parties because of specific issues & stances on policy. If you really believe you can create a party based on common ground and consensus, have a Convention, propose a real Platform, publish the dang thing broadly, and let your MEMBERS decide if they want to continue the ride-along or not.

    ALL of them - conservative and progressive alike - deserve better than a piece-meal list of candidates. I have to wonder, HOW, exactly is the IPO going to advocate for Education when it supports both progressive Legislator and public school teacher Ben Cannon while at the same time it supports HD 35 challenger Gordon Fiddes - homeschooler, school voucher fan and charter school board member who has a lot of Tea Party cred. This doesn't exemplify "consensus;" this identifies a party with no identity.

    Again, YOU owe your members better.

    • (Show?)

      Yes. God forbid that people like Gordon and Ben should sit down together and see where they can find points of agreement with regard to education policy or any other matter.

      Great point. Really.

      • (Show?)

        Sal,

        There's nothing wrong with people of varying views trying to find points of agreement, but it still doesn't explain what the Independent PARTY supports in the area of education...is the Party for public education or vouchers? Pro-union or anti-union? Does the Party as an entity have a stance on education? What does the Party want to see happen in the area of education? I guess what I'm asking is, IS the Independent Party an actual Party in that it has a platform and ideals or is it a Party in name only and plans to support whatever their members in a particular area want? So then the Party might be Pro-choice AND pro-life? Pro-public education AND pro-vouchers? If your Party plans to support it's chosen candidates for election and your chosen candidates don't have to measure up to at least portions of a Party Platform, how do you propose getting members to donate if they can't be assured that their monies won't go to support a candidate who holds a view opposite of theirs? You've held an internet primary---are you planning on holding a Platform Convention of some sort so your Party can publicly state exactly where they stand on major policy issues? It feels like the cart has been placed before the horse in some ways.

        • (Show?)

          Again, there is no reason to suppose that just because Democrats and Republicans choose to define themselves based on where they disagree with the other side that every political party needs to make the same kind of destructive choice.

          • (Show?)

            So, you'll just go where your followers say they want to go, supporting whatever the majority wants in each individual race? So, as a "Party" you may be supporting a progressive Dem, a Blue Dog Dem, a centrist Republican and a tea-bagger all at once?

            Wow. If you ever do have a live-person convention can I sell tickets and popcorn? Cause this will be fun to watch! Scary, but fun.

            Good luck, but I think you're going to find that if you label yourselves as a Party, people are going to expect you to, you know, act like a Party. Even the smallest Party out there has a platform and agreed upon ideals.

            But hey, I could be wrong. Maybe it's time to move beyond Party Politics and embrace the notion that we can all find common ground. The pro-lifer will embrace the pro-choicer, the tea-partier and the progressive Dem will share their love of America over a latte...and I have some ocean-front property in Oklahoma, very cheap. Call 1-IMP-OSS-IBLE for a quote.

            • (Show?)

              MMH - You have hit upon the greatest problem with the two party system which is that it hides the fact that relatively few of us define ourselves first and foremost by what political party we belong to, and that most of us agree with each other on a whole lot more issues than we disagree with each other on.

              You are mistaken if you believe that if someone doesn't agree with you on abortion or gay rights that it also means that they will disagree with you on land use policy, worker's rights, or tax policy.

              That just isn't the case, and the extent to which the major parties have masked that fact is the extent to which they have become an obstacle to conducting the People's business in a meaningful and collaborative way.

              Is it naive to believe that things can be different? Perhaps. But as Lincoln said, "The dogmas of the quiet past, are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise -- with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves, and then we shall save our country."

              One thing I am absolutely certain of: We need to change how we approach one another in the political arena. Our politicians should be brothers in arms, not enemy combatants. I may have serious disagreements with some of our candidates on a range of issues. But those points of disagreement prevent people from working collaboratively on issues for which a consensus can be found.

              YMMV.

              • (Show?)

                Sal

                Actually, there is very little evidence in survey data to support most of what you claim above.

                Yes, there are a few issues that are cross cutting--abortion and gay rights are two (and perhaps it's illustrative that you chose those).

                But on the issues that animate most of the political dialogue in this country, U.S. citizens do pretty much sort themselves into broadly defined categories of liberal and conservative (or whatever label you choose to provide).

                You are right that with a different set of rules--ending partisan gerrymandering, multimember districts, perhaps even PR--we would almost certainly produce ruling coalitions that would span current ideological differences.

                But to suggest that such differences don't exist is simply false. If you want the evidence, I can cite it for you ad nauseum.

                What the public needs is not a party that feeds the tendency for false consensus (the belief that everyone agrees with me) but one that educates them that political differences are all right, that political conflict is natural, and the politics, like sausage making, can be distasteful but ultimately productive.

                As to your Lincoln quote, it is from an 1862 address to Congress. It's a classic quote, but often misused and is again here. To compare the current state of American dogmas to to the historic battle over slavery is bad enough, but you fail to provide the context of the speech. A month before issuing the Emancipation Proclamation, Lincoln proposed a set of alternative measures to Congress, at a time when the North's war effort was in serious jeopardy, including voluntary colonization of slaves and compensated emancipation.

                It's a matter for historians how the nation would look today if we had brokered a peace deal with the South under those terms. The reality is that Lincoln whether out of principle or necessity ended up rejecting any sort of compromise settlement, declared emancipation outright, and the rest is, as they say, history.

                • (Show?)

                  Paul,

                  I didn't compare the current state of affairs to slavery. You did. I simply provided a quote that is meaningful and relevant to any period of turmoil.

                  I have not claimed that there are no differences between the two parties, I have only suggested, as our President famously has, that the American people are not as divided as our politics suggest.

                  I believe that the efforts of partisans to deepen and accentuate real divisions within the electorate rather than looking for points of consensus and agreement is not serving this country well, and any reasonable view of polling indicates -- as I believe you have suggested -- that most people who consider themselves "independent" share that view. It is certainly a major consideration among the members I have spoken with.

                  Out of curiosity, do the kind of strawmen you are articulating actually work on the kids at Reed?

              • (Show?)

                Sal,

                While we may be able to find consensus on some issues it's not enough to build a long-term relationship or Party upon. I've been "in bed" with people/groups I never expected when our mutual goals crossed, but as soon as that particular campaign was over---poof! We each went our own ways again.

                Because the issues on which we disagree ARE the defining issues for each person---and each Party. They go straight to the heart of how we believe people should be treated and governed. I just don't see how you can build a Party and actively and effectively include/involve people who, at their core, have diametrically opposed views of how government should work. What's interesting is although your members may agree on some of the details (campaign finance reform, etc) they don't appear to have a cohesive plan/view of how government overall should function. Like I said earlier, I think the cart is in front of the horse.

                But I sincerely wish you luck and I'll be watching to see how it all plays out.

                • (Show?)

                  I think we can agree to disagree on what really matters in terms of how we define myself.

                  My view is that we should define ourselves, first and foremost, in terms of the common ground that we share. That is, we should define ourselves as citizens first, not as partisans.

                  Because I believe that, I also believe that a party can grow and thrive by trying to build a bridge between the two major parties because more than anything, that is what the electorate wants and expects from our politicians.

                  Finally, I think you have turned the cart before the horse analogy on its head.

                  How can you develop a relevant and meaningful plan without first asking people what they want?

                  • (Show?)

                    "myself" should have read "ourselves" in Paragraph 1.

                  • (Show?)

                    We're talking about different carts and horses.

                    What I meant was that I think you should have asked your members what they want in terms of policies, platform and ideals....and THEN looked at courting candidates and holding a primary based on that platform. By holding the election first, your members are all over the map simply voting by their own whims rather than by what your PARTY stands for.

                    I think you should get in place the ideals and goals and then look for candidates that can meet them. Not look for candidates that each person likes and try, as a Party, to support each of those candidates.

                    But, different strokes for different folks. And it's been an interesting conversation.

  • (Show?)

    Speaking of "cabals", KC - what percentage of Democrats living in SD 10 participated in nominating Jackie Pierce last week? Or Ainge? Or any of the other major party candidates who have been nominated after the primary?

    Waiting for KC or Kari to raise questions about the major party's process for filling vacancies. Waiting. Waiting....

    • (Show?)

      According to your "logic" about building consensus, because you have members voting far left and far right, somehow that translates into census. It is, as KC pointed out, BS. You have managed to get people to check the box "Independent" because the common inference that word conveys, and for very little else. If your party name was anything else, say Bull-Moose or some other name and not the word "Independent" I doubt you could fill a single seating section of the Rose Garden.

      • (Show?)

        Actually, Mitch, we have members from across the political spectrum, but what we have found is that there are several points of agreement that are relatively constant across the political spectrum. Your point, I guess, is that there is no point finding those points of agreement just because there are other issues where you may not agree.

        Frankly, it's a stupid argument and one that has not served this country well in recent years.

        • (Show?)

          What blather. Your party would have less than enough to field a full football team if didn't have the word "Independent" in it and has no coherent platform. It is bordering on political snake oil.

    • (Show?)

      Interesting slight of hand, Sal. Distract from the argument by implying impropriety. But for the sake of information, I'll respond.

      AS per state law - http://www.leg.state.or.us/ors/249.html the major party of the vacating nominee determines its replacement under it's own rules. The Democratic Party of Oregon uses a similar method of nomination as prescribed by State Law for vacancies in office. (171.060). A nominating convention is held, and elected precinct committee people in that district select a nominee.

      And this is relevant to your own statewide primary how .....??

      • (Show?)

        I'm not implying any impropriety. I'm merely pointing out that if it's okay for you to criticize the Independent Party for giving Ben Cannon our nomination in an election involving 13 members out of 750, then it perfectly reasonable for me to point out that a comparable number of Democrats (out of 26,000 Democrats in SD 10) voted to nominate Jackie Pierce for the state senate.

        And, of course, our process was far more transparent and had much greater public notice. How many Democrats in SD 10 were even aware that an election was being held? What percentage of party members living in the district were actually notified by the DPO?

  • (Show?)

    Apples and Oranges, Sal. This was to replace a candidate who'd dropped out, and the selection was made by PCPs who themselves were elected by the Democratic voters in their own District. The Democratic primary turnout in Multco was over 32% - lousy #s in my book, but your HD 46 primary had a 1.7% turnout.

    Again, this isn't a gotcha moment on your part, you're simply avoiding the questions YOU'VE been asked.

    Just when and how are you going to conduct that Convention or process that gives your Party that "consensus"? Consensus is defined as "firstly - general agreement and, secondly - group solidarity of belief or sentiment." Getting a small percentage of voters to participate in an online vote is NOT consensus, it's an online vote.

    Bragging about your idealistic goal for the IPO hasn't made it so - get out there and do it. Your voters deserve to know that they are all about consensus and deserve to be part of the process that gets there.

  • (Show?)

    BTW:

    Sal asked: "Do you really believe that Republican operatives didn't use your comments and the well-publicized attacks by others to hurt perceptions of Democratic candidates in our election? Do you think they won't bring these things up again in the general election?

    "As chair of the Mult Dems, your job is to elect Democrats. Your public actions have done nothing but hurt Democratic candidates in our election and continue to hurt the perception of Democrats with Independent Party members and with folks who see themselves as "independents"...

    You know, Sal, if I was misquoted or taken out of context - as you did - folks could say that I wanted to NUKE Salem. Further, when early on I was critical of IPO leadership behavior, I pointed out that IPO leadership nomination process would net more progressive wins than would a broader vote among its members.

    Nonetheless I joined the chorus of Dems who advocated for your voters being allowed to participate in the nomination. WE actually stepped up for your rank and file folk, regardless of what partisan impact it could effect.

    But I don't imagine that you've broadly shared THAT w/ your membership.

connect with blueoregon