FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 13, 2020
Norman Turrill, Chair, People Not Politicians, (503) 386-7996
People Not Politicians applaud Secretary of State Bev Clarno’s decision to allow Oregonians extended time to sign petitions to end gerrymandering
SALEM — The People Not Politicians campaign provided the following statement on the Secretary of State’s decision released this evening:
“We are grateful the Secretary of State recognized the importance of the democratic process and the significant impacts of the pandemic on Oregonians’ ability to participate in this process,” said Norman Turrill, chair of People Not Politicians and Chief Petitioner of IP 57. “While we are confident in the validity of the signatures we submitted, we know there are tens of thousands of Oregon voters eager for their signature to count. We will continue to collect signatures to ensure Oregon voters have a chance to bring the redistricting reform we need to end gerrymandering in Oregon once and for all.”
Secretary Clarno released her decision in response to a preliminary order issued by Judge Michael J. McShane on July 10 to grant People Not Politicians, a broad and diverse coalition that has come together to create an independent citizens commission for Oregon, relief to qualify its redistricting reform initiative for the November 2020 election.
The judge’s order allowed the Secretary of State to decide by 5:00pm Monday, July 13, 2020 to either accept People Not Politician’s signatures as submitted, or accept a reduced number of signatures to 58,789 and allow additional time to gather until August 17, 2020. The campaign submitted over 64,000 signatures on July 2.
Initiative Petition 57, filed in November 2019, would create the Oregon Citizens Redistricting Commission and put redistricting in the hands of voters, not our politicians. The commission would consist of 12 Oregonians who applied and were selected from qualified applicants – four from the first largest political party, four from the second largest political party, and four others who are third party members or non-affiliated. Major donors to political candidates or parties would not be eligible. Neither would elected-officials, political party officials or their family members. Commissioners would be selected to represent the broad diversity of Oregonians.
The initiative campaign coalition has been led by the League of Women Voters of Oregon, Common Cause Oregon, Oregon Farm Bureau, the Independent Party of Oregon, NAACP Eugene/Springfield Branch, OSPIRG, Oregon’s Progressive Party, and tens of thousands of Oregonians who support the effort to remove conflicts of interest from drawing of voter lines.