Oregon: U.S. Supreme Court won’t hear  lawsuit that sought to end mail voting | Julia Shumway/Oregon Capital Chronicle

On the eve of Oregon’s primary election, a group of Republican candidates and election deniers learned they won’t get to make their case to the U.S. Supreme Court to end Oregon’s mail voting system. The high court on Monday declined to hear an appeal from plaintiffs, including state Sen. Dennis Linthicum, the leading Republican candidate for secretary of state, in a case that sought to overturn the method Oregon voters have used to vote in every election for decades. The Supreme Court didn’t give a reason for declining to hear the case, Thielman v. Fagan. Marc Thielman, a former school superintendent who captured 8% of the vote in his sixth-place finish in the 2022 Republican gubernatorial primary, led several other Republicans in suing then-Secretary of State Shemia Fagan in October 2022. Read Article

Oregon elections officials meet with USPS after delays reported in some ballot returns | Dirk VanderHart/OPB

Oregon elections officials met with representatives from the United States Postal Service on Thursday morning, after concerns emerged that some post offices across the state were delaying delivery of completed ballots sent by mail. “In no uncertain terms, they have said, ‘We will fix this. This should not be happening,’” said Molly Woon, the state’s elections director. “We continue to have complete faith in the vote-by-mail system.” While Woon acknowledged that filled-out ballots have been delayed in reaching elections offices in Lincoln, Douglas and possibly other counties, she said those delays will not impact timeliness of results in the May 21 primary election if postal officials follow through on their promise. Read Article

Oregon: County clerks say 2020 election deniers make their jobs tougher | Peter Wong/Portland Tribune

Elected officials in two Oregon counties, Marion and Polk, disclosed the impact of false claims about the 2020 presidential election on election workers, leading to retirements and resignations. The statements followed a report commissioned by the state Elections Division, revealing that approximately one-third of top election managers across the state’s counties have left since 2020 due to false claims undermining trust in elections. Read Article

Oregon: Petitioners fail to put hand-counting on the ballot in Douglas County | Roman Battaglia/Jefferson Public Radio

Three board members of the Douglas County Republican Party have faced repeated denials in their attempt to get a petition approved, which aims to require the county to hand-count ballots in future elections. They’ve submitted six petitions since last year, all of which have been denied by the County Clerk. The latest proposal was turned down in mid-October. One of the petitioners argues that electronic voting machines lack transparency and cannot be checked by the public, emphasizing the importance of decentralized decision-making in the electoral process. The County Clerk maintains that the latest petition did not meet the requirements of being a matter of county concern and legislative, and declined to offer further clarification. The Secretary of State’s office states that these terms do not have official definitions, leaving it up to the county clerk to assess if the initiative aligns with state constitutional requirements. Read Article

New York City pension funds and state of Oregon sue Fox over 2020 election coverage | Associated Press

New York City’s pension funds and the state of Oregon have filed a lawsuit against Fox Corporation, alleging that the company allowed Fox News to broadcast false information about the 2020 election, resulting in harm to investors and making the network vulnerable to defamation lawsuits. The complaint, filed in Delaware, accuses Fox of amplifying conspiracy theories about the election, leading to a settlement of nearly $800 million with Dominion Voting Systems. The suit contends that Fox’s board prioritized airing former President Donald Trump’s election falsehoods to appease his supporters, knowing it could lead to legal repercussions. The complaint does not specify the damages sought, but it highlights the board’s disregard for journalistic standards and failure to implement safeguards against defamation litigation. Read Article

Oregon: Federal judge tosses lawsuit over mail voting, tabulation machines | Julia Shumway/Oregon Capital Chronicle

A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit seeking to end mail voting and electronic voting tabulation in Oregon, stating that the plaintiffs, a group of unsuccessful Republican candidates and election deniers, lack standing to sue. The plaintiffs alleged that Oregon’s computerized vote tabulation and mail-in voting systems violated their constitutional rights, but the judge ruled that their claims were generalized grievances and lacked evidence. The lawsuit relied on a film by right-wing commentator Dinesh D’Souza, which had been debunked by election experts. The case is part of several attempts by election deniers to discredit elections in Oregon and elsewhere. Read Article

Oregon Secretary of State Shemia Fagan resigns over cannabis side job | Julia Shumway/Oregon Capital Chronicle

Secretary of State Shemia Fagan will resign next Monday, a little more than a week after news broke of her moonlighting for a troubled cannabis company that played a key role in an audit conducted by her office. It’s an abrupt fall from grace for Fagan, next in line for governor and long viewed as a rising star in state Democratic politics. Political watchers have speculated that she would run for governor, Congress or the U.S. Senate in the coming years, and she had already announced plans to seek re-election in 2024. Fagan submitted her resignation by email to Gov. Tina Kotek at 2:26 p.m. Tuesday, several hours after she told Kotek and announced it publicly, according to documents shared by the Secretary of State’s office. “While I am confident that the ethics investigation will show that I followed the state’s legal and ethical guidelines in trying to make ends meet for my family, it is clear that my actions have become a distraction from the important and critical work of the Secretary of State’s office,” Fagan wrote. “Protecting our state’s democracy and ensuring faith in our elected leaders – these are the reasons I ran for this office,” she continued. “They are also the reasons I am submitting my resignation now.”

Full Article: Fall of a rising star: Oregon Secretary of State Shemia Fagan resigns over cannabis side job – Oregon Capital Chronicle

Oregon: 18-year-old helps uncover software glitch that failed to register 8,000 voters | Dianne Lugo/Salem Statesman Journal

An error in place for the past six years failed to pre-register nearly 8,000 Oregonians to vote, according to a release from the Oregon Secretary of State’s office. The error has since been fixed and ballots are expected to be mailed later this week to ensure the 7,767 eligible voters affected are able to participate in the November General Election. Discovery of the error was prompted by a call from a young voter, according to Ben Morris from the Oregon Secretary of State’s office. The voter had not received their ballot as they had expected after visiting the DMV when they were 16 years old. Any Oregonian with a qualifying interaction with their DMV usually has voting information automatically sent to the Oregon Secretary of State’s office to register or update voter registration information. After looking into their records, the office discovered Friday that a software error had not triggered the process correctly for the 18-year-old as it should have, Morris said. “In reviewing the software, that’s when they discovered the error in how it was written,” Morris added. More specifically, the software at the Secretary of State’s office that handles the transfer was incorrectly written and failed to pre-register 16- and 17-year-olds whose birthdays fall within one month of their DMV interaction. Leadership of the Elections and Information Systems Division at the Oregon Secretary of State’s office met Friday afternoon to determine the number of affected voters, the release said.

Full Article: Teen helps Oregon uncover registration error affecting 8K

Oregon secretary of state orders extensive post-election audit in Clackamas County | Julia Shumway/Oregon Capital Chronicle

Clackamas County must perform a more extensive post-election audit than other counties because of its ballot-printing issues, Secretary of State Shemia Fagan ordered Friday. After every election, the secretary of state directs each county to hand-count votes in at least two races on randomly selected batches of ballots to compare with machine-tabulated results. Fagan on Friday said Clackamas County must do more to rebuild trust with voters after a printing issue that delayed results and constantly changing statements from County Clerk Sherry Hall, who oversees elections. “My mission as Oregon’s secretary of state is to build trust,” Fagan said. “But let’s face it, weeks of negative headlines eroded Oregonians’ trust in elections. Even though processing the votes in Clackamas County was slow, it is now my responsibility to confirm that it was done correctly so voters can trust the election results.” Two weeks before the May 17 election, and after ballots had already been sent out, Hall learned that a portion of the county’s ballots had been printed with defective barcodes. That printing error didn’t affect any of the contests on a ballot, but it meant tabulation machines couldn’t detect which races were on a specific ballot. Fixing it meant county election workers, working in teams of two, needed to hand-copy each defective ballot onto a new ballot with a usable barcode. That takes about three minutes per ballot, with one member of the team reading off votes, the second filling out a new ballot and then switching roles to ensure the two ballots match.

Full Article: Oregon secretary of state orders extensive post-election audit in Clackamas County – Oregon Capital Chronicle

Oregon: Two-thirds of Clackamas County ballots will need to be duplicated by hand due to printing error | Jamie Goldberg/The Oregonian

The vast majority of ballots that Clackamas County election officials sent to voters have defective barcodes making them unreadable by voting counting machines, an error that will cost the county extra money and delay election results. County Clerk Sherry Hall said Wednesday that about two-thirds of the ballots that have been returned to the county so far are marred by the error and require that the voter’s choice in each race be duplicated by hand. The county is preparing for a similar percentage of ballots returned in the coming days to have the same issue, she said. Election officials didn’t notice the error before ballots were sent out. Hall said those ballots will still be counted, but the process of tallying those votes will take extra time and money. At least two election workers registered with different political parties will participate in the copying of votes to new ballots, Hall said. Secretary of State Shemia Fagan incorrectly assured reporters multiple times Wednesday that the county would be able to use a machine to transfer the votes onto new ballots and wouldn’t have to do the job by hand. Her office issued a correction Thursday.

Full Article: Two-thirds of Clackamas County ballots will need to be duplicated by hand due to printing error – oregonlive.com

Oregon: Printing error affecting many Clackamas County ballots will require copying votes by hand, raising county costs and delaying election results | Jamie Goldberg/The Oregonian

Clackamas County election officials sent ballots with defective barcodes to an unknown number of voters for the May 17 primary, an error that will cost the county extra money and will likely delay election results. County Clerk Sherry Hall announced Wednesday that a printing error had caused the barcodes on many ballots to be blurred, making them unreadable by the county’s ballot processing equipment. Election officials didn’t notice the error before the ballots were sent to voters. It’s one of at least four errors or misdeeds, one of them criminal, that have marred Clackamas County elections since 2010 and one of two significant mistakes the county elections office made this year. Hall said the defective ballots will still be counted, but the process of tallying those votes will take more time because election workers will have to fill out new ballots by hand for voters whose barcodes were defective. At least two election workers registered with different political parties will participate in the transferring of votes to the new ballots to ensure mistakes are avoided, Hall said. Election observers will witness the process and the county will keep the damaged ballots on file.

Full Article: Printing error affecting many Clackamas County ballots will require copying votes by hand, raising county costs and delaying election results – oregonlive.com

Oregon: New bill introduced to better protect elections officials | Madison LaBerge/KOTI

With elections officials across the country facing increasing threats, including in southern Oregon, a new bill is under consideration in Salem. House Bill 4144 is gaining support from elections officials across the state. It would exempt elections officials from disclosing their addresses in public records. Jackson County’s own elections clerk supports the legislation. “Written in these huge, probably six to eight, possibly even 10 foot letters were: ‘VOTE DON’T WORK’ and then just south of that ‘NEXT TIME BULLETS.’ And it literally just, it threw me off,” said Chris Walker, the Jackson County elections clerk, going into her 14th year. She said threatening vandalism was found in the parking lot across the street from the elections office, just one day after the county certified the 2020 elections results. “I can’t believe the stuff we’ve heard about happening around the country, it’s here and now in our own county — in Jackson County. It was very disheartening, and very disturbing, as well,” said Walker.

Full Article: New bill introduced to better protect elections officials – KOBI-TV NBC5 / KOTI-TV NBC2

Oregon legislature passes election worker safety bill | Jamie Parfitt/KGW

A bill aimed at shielding Oregon’s election workers from intimidation and threats has now passed both chambers of the legislature, heading to Governor Kate Brown’s desk for a signature. House Bill 4144 allows election workers to keep their home addresses from public disclosure, and makes the crime of harassment against an election worker punishable by a maximum 364 days in prison and a $6,250 fine — upgrading it from a Class B misdemeanor to a Class A misdemeanor. The 2020 election became a particular hotbed of hostility and harassment, much of it directed at the workers and elected officials who oversee vote-counting throughout the country. While Oregon was far from the worst example, there were enough incidents that some lawmakers and county clerks felt that something had to be done. Jackson County Clerk Chris Walker, a nonpartisan elected official, championed HB 4144 after her office became the target of threats. Shortly after the 2020 election, someone painted a message in a nearby parking lot: “vote don’t work” and “next time bullets.”

Full Article: Oregon legislature passes election worker safety bill | kgw.com

Oregon: Facing threats, elections workers lobby for bill that would increase penalties for harassment | Chris Lehman/The Oregonian

When Jackson County clerk Chris Walker arrived for work on Nov. 24, 2020, she encountered something she’d never experienced in her dozen years on the job. In a parking lot across the street from the elections office, someone had written in bold white paint: “NEXT TIME BULLETS.” “After walking across the street and taking photos, we spent the rest of the day pretty much in shock that this could have happened here,” said Walker. “The noise happening around the country had hit home.” Walker testified to the Oregon House Rules Committee Tuesday in favor of a bill that would increase criminal penalties for people convicted of harassing election workers. The bill would also exempt the home addresses of election workers from certain public records. “The goal is to protect the people who protect our democracy,” said Secretary of State Shemia Fagan in support of House Bill 4144. Fagan said elections workers in Oregon receive threats related to their work and submitted as evidence a portion of a letter that she says was received last month by an Oregon county clerk. “I’m coming after you. You will go down in flames – GUARANTEED!” read the handwritten letter.

Full Article: Facing threats, elections workers lobby for bill that would increase penalties for harassment – oregonlive.com

Oregon: A year after the 2020 election, county clerks still fighting back fraud allegations | Julia Shumway/Malheur Enterprise

A week before this November’s Linn County special election over a tax increase to fund law enforcement, a man walked into the election office and asked to see the county clerk. Steve Druckenmiller walked over and asked how he could help, but the man didn’t want assistance. “I just wanted to see the enemy of my country and the enemy of my God,” Druckenmiller recalled him saying. “And then he started talking in tongues.” Druckenmiller heard the man out, then asked him to leave. It was the first in a series of encounters this election cycle with voters who were supposed to drop off their ballots or fix mismatched signatures on ballot envelopes but instead wanted to criticize Druckenmiller for how his office ran an election a year ago. “This last election, he was the first one, and then on Election Day, I had people come in and they wanted to argue about everything,” Druckenmiller said. “I don’t mind if they want to talk to me like that, but some of these people start with my staff.” It’s been just over a year since more than 159 million Americans, and more than 2.4 million Oregonians, cast their ballots in the 2020 general election and elected Joe Biden as the 46th president of the United States. In the intervening months, Oregon election officials have run elections for school boards, new local taxes and other ballot propositions.

Full Article: A year after the 2020 election, Oregon county clerks still fighting back fraud allegations | Malheur Enterprise

Oregon county clerks inundated with calls for audit of 2020 presidential election | Bill Poehler/Salem Statesman Journal

Eleven months after the 2020 election, county clerks in Oregon are getting a new round of calls and emails disputing the results. Marion County Clerk Bill Burgess said the requests for audits and canvasses of election results in the county have been coming since June. But he said they’ve picked up in the past few weeks following an audit of a county’s election results in Arizona. “People, they’ll come and they’ll start asking the question and then they won’t wait for an answer,” Burgess said. “They’ll start railing away and sometimes with a lot of obscenity and all, too.” In the 2020 presidential election, voters in Marion County swung to Democrat Joe Biden over Republican Donald Trump by 49.2% to 48%, a margin of 1,870 votes out of 164,308. That was a reversal from the 2016 election when Trump carried the county. Burgess said the calls and emails have also become threatening, including some he’s forwarded to the FBI in the past few weeks. He said some of his election staff don’t want their photo taken for fear of being tracked. “It seems to go in waves,” he said. “Sometimes you can’t tell if these are direct threats or not.”

Full Article: Spike in calls for Oregon audit of 2020 election after Arizona recount

Oregon: Election-Day postmarked ballots will count | Peter Wong/Bend Bulletin

Oregon, the first state to conduct all elections by mail, would join the ranks of states accepting ballots postmarked by Election Day under a bill that is headed to Gov. Kate Brown. House Bill 3291 was approved by the Oregon Senate without amendment on a 16-13 vote Thursday. The key vote was cast by Sen. Lee Beyer, D-Springfield, who hung back until it was clear his would be the deciding vote. Beyer said afterward his concern was that in close elections, voters might question the validity of mail ballots counted days after the election date itself. The bill requires ballots to be received by county elections officials no later than seven days after an election. Brown, in her state of the state remarks earlier this year, endorsed Election-Day postmarks. She is a former secretary of state. Seventeen other states — including California, Washington and Nevada — allow ballots to count if postmarked by Election Day. Four others count ballots if postmarked no later than the day before an election. States that allow Election-Day postmarks vary widely, from three to 20 days after an election.

Full Article: Election-Day postmarked ballots will count in Oregon | Local&State | bendbulletin.com

Oregon: Postmarks would count for ballot deadline under bill approved by State House | Chris Lehman/The Oregonian

Oregon voters could mail their ballots as late as Election Day and still have them count, under a bill approved Monday in the House. Since Oregonians were first given the option to vote by mail in local elections in the 1980s, and as elections transitioned entirely to the new system through the ’90s, the deadline to get a ballot to the county elections office have it counted has always been 8 p.m. on Election Night. Ballots that arrive by mail after that deadline aren’t added to the tally. While drop boxes are widely available for last-minute voters, the deadline has meant that people who want to send their ballots though the mail needed to take a guess at how long it would take for the postal service to deliver it to the county elections office. While the vast majority of Oregon voters have successfully met the deadline each election, elections officials in many states last year warned that delays in the postal system meant voters should mail their ballots at least a week before Election Day in order to ensure it was counted. House Bill 3291 would require county clerks in Oregon to accept ballots that arrive up to a week following Election Day, as long as the ballot is postmarked by Election Day. Ballots that arrive prior to the seven-day cut-off but without a clear postmark would be presumed to have been mailed by Election Day.

Full Article: Postmarks would count for ballot deadline under bill approved by Oregon House – oregonlive.com

Oregon’s ousted elections director wanted to leave months before election | Steve Benham/KATU

Stephen Trout was unhappy in his job as Oregon’s director of elections and planned to leave it, but before he could quit on his own terms his boss, Oregon Secretary of State Bev Clarno, fired him. “I could tell this morning that you were unhappy,” Clarno wrote in a text message, obtained through a public records request, that informed Trout he no longer had a job. “I thank you for all you have done for SOS, and I wish you the best in your next endeavor.” The text message was sent at 4:08 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 5, just two days after this year’s general election. Workers at county elections offices throughout the state were still counting ballots and tabulating votes. But now, the last day for the director of the state’s elections division, housed in the secretary of state’s office, would be Nov. 6. Trout had wanted to leave his job since at least the spring of this year, an email obtained through a public records request revealed. In fact, he was interviewing for jobs and had also informed Clarno in an Oct. 27 email that he had told potential employers that he would be ready to work for them starting Tuesday, Dec. 15.

Full Article: Oregon’s ousted elections director wanted to leave months before election | KATU

Oregon: New secretary of state to examine election system warnings | Andrew Selsky/Associated Press

Oregon Secretary of State-elect Shemia Fagan, a Democrat, said she will examine the “critical warnings” that the state’s former elections director voiced before he was fired last week by the incumbent secretary of state. In a blunt memo to Fagan and her Republican challenger on the eve of the 2020 election, Oregon Elections Director Stephen Trout said some of the state’s election systems are running on an operating system that Microsoft stopped supporting last January, pointed out an absence of multifactor authentication to access those election systems and raised other issues. He said the current state of technology and lack of support in the agency made his job impossible. “Oregon’s former Elections Director, Steve Trout raised critical warnings that concern me as Oregon’s next Secretary of State,” Fagan tweeted late Tuesday, Nov. 10. “I spoke with Mr. Trout personally this week and we plan to speak later this week and go through his memo together, line by line.” Trout also said the secretary of state’s office used federal funds inappropriately and may need to be returned after an audit. It is unclear who would do an audit if it comes to that with no conflict of interest, since the secretary of state’s office runs the audits division, besides being in charge of elections.

Full Article: New secretary of state to examine election system warnings | State | eastoregonian.com

Oregon elections director fired after sharing security, spending concerns | Andrew Selsky/Associated Press

Oregon’s elections director was abruptly fired in a text message by the secretary of state after he pointed out serious issues with the state’s aging and vulnerable technology for running elections. Elections Director Stephen Trout learned in a text message Thursday night — as his department and county elections officials were still counting votes from the Nov. 3 election — that he was out. On Friday, Secretary of State Bev Clarno, a Republican appointed to the position by Democratic Gov. Kate Brown, announced to county clerks and other elections officials in Oregon’s 36 counties that “today is also Steve Trout’s last day with the Agency.” Election officials in the state were stunned. Steve Druckenmiller, the veteran Linn County clerk, said Clarno’s action was “dangerous and so ignorant.” “We are still in the election process right now. We are reconciling, we’re dealing with problems right now as far as your signatures and communicating with voters who didn’t sign the ballots,” Druckenmiller said. “We’re going to have to do recounts, all of these things. She doesn’t understand elections.” Clarno spokeswoman Andrea Chiapella said Trout was “a knowledgeable advocate for the democratic process on our team” and that he planned to leave on Dec. 15 anyway. Deputy Director Michelle Teed has been named acting elections director, Chiapella said. Trout said in an email to The Associated Press that although he had already planned to seek a new job, he did not want to go this soon.

Full Article: Oregon elections director fired after sharing security, spending concerns – oregonlive.com

Oregon: Vote-by-mail, ballot counting in age of pandemic | Lisa Balick/KOIN

Oregon’s vote-by-mail is a big win for citizens to cast their ballot in the primary under the shadow of the pandemic. But there are big changes at elections offices trying to keep socially distant while handling hundreds of people who show up needing help. Elections offices are trying to find way to maintain physical distancing for all those who show up — people who didn’t get a ballot or have a problem with the ballot they did get. People can order ahead for a replacement ballot and have it brought to them at a nearby parking lot — sort of like a Ballot-to-Go. The threat of the coronavirus also affected the usual army of seniors who are longtime workers at county offices during elections. Many are staying away for personal safety since they are in the high risk group.

Oregon: ‘A 20-year history of success’: GOP Secretary of State says Oregon shows mail-in voting is secure, effective | Pat Dooris/The Oregonian

Oregon voters began marking ballots that came to them in the mail back in the early 1980s. According to former Secretary of State Phil Keisling, the tradition began with the Linn County elections clerk who wondered why the county was sending sample ballots to voters and not the real thing. That soon changed and in the mid to late 1980s, many local elections in Oregon featured ballots that were mailed to voters. It really took off after the resignation of Oregon Senator Bob Packwood in 1995. Keisling was the Secretary of State at the time and had just seen a fellow Democrat, Gov. John Kitzhaber, veto a bill passed by the Legislature that would have instituted vote by mail for statewide elections. The Packwood election gave Keisling the opening he needed. “Under Oregon law that was a special election. And a special election could be done in this manner and we had the nation’s first ever federal election using all mailed out ballots to everybody and turnout went through the roof. Participation hit 66%,” he said.

Oregon: Primary Elections, by Mail, to Proceed as Planned | Andrew Selsky/Associated Press

Oregon’s primary elections will proceed as scheduled on May 19, the state’s top election official said Thursday, though results may be slower to come in because of the coronavirus pandemic. Several states, including Ohio, Kentucky and Georgia, had recently announced they were moving their primary elections back over COVID-19 concerns. “Because Oregon votes by mail we do not have to be concerned about social distancing issues at polling places that so many other states are struggling with,” Oregon Secretary of State Bev Clarno’s office said by email. Marion County Clerk Bill Burgess noted that ballot counters are normally sitting at tables in fairly crowded rooms and are often over 60 years old, and among the vulnerable population to COVID-19.

Oregon: Two counties offer vote-by-mobile to overseas voters | Andrew Selsky/Associated Press

Two Oregon counties are offering the opportunity for U.S. military members, their dependents and others living overseas to vote in special elections this November with smartphones, officials announced Wednesday. While some technology experts have warned that such systems could be insecure, the two counties have already advised hundreds of registered voters living overseas about the option to cast ballots using blockchain-based mobile voting. Oregon residents normally vote by mail. Jackson County Clerk Christine Walker expressed confidence in the system and said it will help ensure that the votes of those overseas will be counted. She noted that overseas mail systems can be unreliable and that she was very worried that Washington’s threats to pull the United States from the United Nations’ postal agency would prevent voters overseas from casting ballots. “We need to make sure that our military and overseas voters have the not only ability to vote, but they can easily access their ballots in a safe manner,” Walker said in a telephone interview Tuesday. “There was a potential crisis going on.”

Oregon: Hackers Stymied by Vote-by-Mail in Oregon | Governing

Oregon has an advantage over many other states because voters here decided to go to a vote-by-mail system in 1998, said Jackson County Clerk Chris Walker, who oversees local elections. That eliminated the need for voting machines at polling places. “I think we’re one of the leaders in election security,” Walker said of Oregon. The Jackson County Elections Division does have tally equipment to count all those votes that come in by mail. But Walker said the equipment isn’t connected to the internet — a setup that thwarts would-be hackers. Jackson County’s tally equipment is only two years old, she said. “We try to keep up on the technology to make sure the votes are tallied the way the voter intended and to give confide once in the system,” Walker said.

Oregon: On Election Day, Oregon Senate passes bill requiring future election audits | Associated Press

County clerks in Oregon would be required to audit results after each election under a bill that overwhelmingly passed the Senate on Election Day. The bill approved Tuesday requires county clerks to conduct hand-count or risk-limiting audits after every primary, general and special election. Risk-limiting audits are based on counts of statistical samples of paper ballots. Sen. Lew Frederick, a Portland Democrat, said the bill ensures more audits happen to make sure election results are correct. The bill requires audits after every election, instead of just general elections. It goes next to the House. Heading into the 2020 cycle, a new report out Tuesday provides a stark warning about the cyber-insecurity of the highest-profile U.S. political organizations even after years of concerted efforts to improve digital safeguards and an intense focus in Washington on the need to secure campaigns and elections.

Oregon: The Governor Who Couldn’t Vote: Why America Forgot About Carolyn Shelton | OPB

Calling the America of the early 20th century a “man’s world” is an understatement. In most of the country, women were not considered full citizens. The march toward women’s suffrage — and the rights that came with it — was slowly moving ahead. But setbacks were common. In Oregon, women found themselves once again shut out of the larger political process. In the fall of 1908, the state’s male electorate dealt the suffragists one of the most resounding blows in their long battle for voting rights. Men overwhelmingly voted against granting suffrage to women. It was the movement’s fourth defeat since 1884. Meanwhile, a young woman in the state’s capital was quietly making political history. On a Saturday morning in February 1909, Carolyn B. Shelton took a seat at the Oregon governor’s desk in Salem. She was the nation’s first female governor.

Oregon: Phishing attempts on Oregon election officials increase | Associated Press

Oregon’s paper-ballot voting system in the state has never been more accurate or secure, though the number of phishing attempts targeting election officials has increased, the state’s elections director said. Oregon Elections Director Steve Trout said he himself has been hit by a dozen phishing attempts since July. In all of 2017, he had only one or two. Phishing is an attempt to trick people into sharing sensitive information such as passwords and usernames, often by inducing them to click on a bogus link or by pretending to be an entity. The FBI and U.S. Department of Homeland Security officials advised Trout and others attending a security summit this week that there has been a huge increase in phishing attempts in the nation, targeting elections officials and other critical infrastructure such as energy and banking sectors, Trout told journalists Tuesday.

Oregon: State seeks to protect state election system from Russia | Associated Press

The state office in charge of Oregon’s elections was granted funding from the Legislature for an Internet security position to protect against Russian government interference and hacking by others, officials said Tuesday. While Adm. Mike Rogers, director of the U.S. Cyber Command and the National Security Agency, said Tuesday in Washington that the U.S. response to Russian meddling and disinformation campaigns has not been strong enough, Oregon has been taking steps to bolster its cyberdefenses. A letter signed by Oregon Deputy Secretary of State Leslie Cummings asked for $166,348 to cover the cost of the new IT security position, saying “Oregon was one of 21 states targeted by Russian government cyberactivities.”