TL;DR version: Oregon's conservatives and gun owners will have our hands full.
|Governor Kate Brown|
On the surface, the Secretary of State's job duties are pretty straightforward. As put forth in Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) Chapter 177, the office has very few explicit duties, and most provide surprisingly little wiggle-room for partisan politics. The Oregon Secretary of State is responsible for:
- Keeping records of all official acts of the Oregon Department of Administrative Services (DAS) and informing the legislature of the same; and,
- Affixing the state seal, countersigning, and keeping a register of official acts and commissions issued by the Governor; and,
- The safekeeping of all enrolled laws and resolutions; and,
- Keeping the office open during business hours.
On the other hand, the Office of the Secretary of State is a powerful loudspeaker, elevating an otherwise-mundane official into a powerful spokesperson. People listen to the person who holds this office, and as an elected official, we can look at who supported Kate Brown's last races, when she was elected in 2008 and re-elected to another term in 2012. And here is where it gets interesting (and no, the picture is not pretty).
Looking through her views on the issues particular to her office, she's a vocal opponent to "voter ID" laws — y'know, the ones that keep illegal immigrants from voting illegally. We can also infer from that link that she's in favor of limiting campaign spending. Say what you want about it, but getting the word out about someone's candidacy and position on issues requires money, and at the time she was promoting voluntary (for now) spending limits, she was the incumbent. She already had a metaphorical soapbox and bullhorn, and would have denied an equivalent voice to her challenger (also, he was out-raising and out-spending her by a wide margin).
As far as endorsements and campaign contributors from the 2012 election, it's a veritable who's-who of leftist, "Progressive" groups. Additionally, one of the controversies from the 2008 election was the involvement of the Secretary of State Project, described as "a below-the-radar 527 political organization whose stated purpose is 'wrestling control of the country from the Republican Party' through the process of 'removing their political operatives from deciding who can vote and whose votes will count,' namely the office of Secretary of State in many cases."
To be clear, I'll say that again: Kate Brown was supported, by both endorsement and financial assistance, by a (now-dissolved) group committed to removing Republican candidates from power by disallowing and/or disqualifying Republican voters from voting. Whether or not the Oregon Secretary of State is able to do such a thing is irrelevant; her campaign accepted the endorsement and money, so obviously they have some shared interests.
|Oregon's Only No Compromise|
Gun Rights Organization
(click to visit OFF's site)
I pray for all gun owners and conservatives in Oregon.