What to know about your voters' pamphlet

How did opinions end up in voter pamphlet?

Many people use Voters’ Pamphlets to help them make decisions. But some people noticed one particular argument against Multnomah County ballot Measure 26-184 regarding campaign finance.

Among many things it said, "Oregon elections are rigged by big money let's keep it that way," and "Power to the best people with the most money."

“It was hilarious,” said Rose Nabehet, a voter in the Portland area who noticed the argument.

“It's just a nice little reward for doing my civic duty,” she continued.

But how do arguments for or against measures get into the Voters' Pamphlet? All you need is a little cash.

“Anyone can put an argument into the Voters’ Pamphlet if they have the filing fee. It really is that easy,” said Tim Scott, Multnomah County Elections Director.

In Multnomah County, the fee is $400. It varies depending on the jurisdiction. But there are limits.

“They can't use libel or they can't use profanity. But it's First Amendment protected speech,” said Scott.

None of the arguments for or against are fact-checked, neither are what the candidates write about themselves. In addition, not all candidates are listed in the pamphlet.

KGW’s political analyst Len Bergstein said it's a little bit of voter-beware.

“Those first couple of pages are thing you can really rely on. What does the statement say, what does the measure do," said Bergstein.

But some people said the problem is sometimes the explanations are hard to understand. Some rely on arguments for and against certain measures.
 


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment