Oregon Secretary of State Dennis Richardson has released the list of Independent Party of Oregon nominees. Because the IPO is a new major party, there were only a handful of Independent Party members printed on the primary ballot. So many nominees won by write in vote. Every write in winner was also a nominee of the Democratic or Republican Party.
Here are some highlights
- In Congressional races two IPO nominees are party members (Mark Roberts in CD-2 and Marc Koller in CD-3). The other nominees are Democratic incumbents
- of the 16 Oregon Senate Districts, 9 IPO write in nominees are Republicans, 7 are Democrats and one (Senate District 6) was declared vacant as the write in winner was not eligible. That means the IPO will have the opportunity to nominate 2 Senate candidates as it will also be nominating a candidate for the Senate District 1 due to the resignation of Jeff Kruse). The IPO had no party members file for any Senate seats.
- In the House, there are 5 IPO member nominees as well as 29 Republicans and 25 Democrats who won the nomination by write in.
What are some takeaways?
- In federal races, IPO members lean Democratic.
- At the State level IPO members lean slightly Republican.
- IPO members generally support incumbents. But a big exception is in Senate District 11 where the Republican candidate won the IPO nomination over Democratic Senate Leader Peter Courtney.
- If an IPO member is listed on the ballot, it’s very difficult if not impossible for a Democrat or Republican to win as a write in candidate as long as the IPO candidate was in the voters pamphlet.
- The 2018 blue wave may very well occur nationwide, and even in federal races here in Oregon. But if the IPO voters are any indication even i/Independent voters who vote Democratic based on the national parties positions could split their tickets when it comes to state races. It depends on how much of the blue wave is attributable to national policy, how much is really anger at those currently in office and whether voters will make the federal/state distinction.