Keisling touts open primary initiative
JOHN SOWELL News ReviewMay 5, 2006 ... Former Secretary of State Phil Keisling isn't ready to advocate that Oregonians should shuck their political labels at the elections office door. However, he would like to see the state broaden the appeal of its primaries by opening ballots to all registered voters. ....Keisling's group, which also includes former Republican Secretary of State Norma Paulus, has collected 50,000 signatures to get the measure on the November ballot. They have until toward the end of the month to collect another 50,000.
Sara Byers, a Roseburg Democrat, asked Keisling whether the initiative, if approved, would spell the end of the political parties in Oregon. ...Keisling said the Legislature would likely shift away from the deep-seated philosophical leanings of the two major parties if a number of independent candidates were elected because of the shift to an open primary. That would make it harder for party leaders to ensure their members toe the party line and would allow a better mix of ideas.... more