Time to Vote in the Oregon Primary!

**Updated May 15th**

Find your closest ballot drop box here! Ballots are due by 8pm on Tuesday, May 19th!

Oregon’s vote-by-mail system has become a national topic of conversation during the outbreak of COVID-19. Now that system will be on display as we head to the polls for the 2020 Primary on May 19th. While other states receive lots of fanfare due to their outsized influence on the selection of presidential candidates, Oregon’s primary is special in a different way. Many of the local positions up for election could be decided during the May primary instead of in the general election next November. For most nonpartisan positions, if a candidate receives over 50% of the votes in the May Primary Election, they are automatically elected. If no one candidate wins 50% of the votes in the primary then the top two vote-getters move on to the general election in November. This means that participating in the May election is crucial to having your voice heard! Fortunately for you we’ve put together a handy collection of information on the candidates and ballot measures you’ll see on your ballot.

Which positions can be decided in the May Primary?

  • Statewide Judicial Office
  • Circuit Court Judges
  • District Attorneys
  • City or District offices (like Portland City Commissioners and Mayor)
  • County offices

Which positions must be elected in November?

  • All partisan positions (e.g. National and Oregon State Senators/Representatives)
  • County Sheriff
  • County Clerk or County Treasurer

You should have already received your Voters’ Pamphlet – if you haven’t yet, click here for information on how to get yours, plus other voting and registration information!

oregon_outline_state_flagThe majority of the judge candidates are running unopposed. Below are the 3 positions with more than one candidate running. Incumbent candidates are marked with a ** and candidate websites are provided where available.

Oregon Supreme Court, Position 1

  • **Thomas Balmer: appointed in 2001 by then-Governor John Kitzhaber. He was subsequently elected to the court in 2002.
  • Van Pounds: Lawyer and Senior Policy Analyst.

Oregon Court of Appeals, Position 11

  • **Joel DeVore: appointed in 2013 by then-Governor John Kitzhaber to one of three new seats created by the Oregon State Legislature in 2012. He was subsequently elected to the court in 2014.
  • Kyle Krohn: Appellate Public Defender

Oregon Circuit Court, 4th District, Position 12 incumbent Gregory F. Silver is not seeking reelection

District Attorney
 incumbent Rod Underhill is not seeking reelection

The Portland City Council is made up of Four Commissioners and the Mayor. All positions are 4-year terms, with two Commissioner positions up for reelection each two years. This year Positions 1 and 4 up for reelection. Additionally, the untimely passing of Nick Fish in January means Position 2 is also on the ballot this year. In that race only, if no one candidate receives over 50% of the vote, there will be a special election before November for the top two vote-getters. All incumbent candidates are marked with a ** and candidate websites are provided where available.

Mayor The following four candidates participated in recent virtual debates and are considered the front runners.

  • **Ted Wheeler: elected as Mayor in 2016. Endorsed by: Commissioner JoAnn Hardesty, Metro President Lynn Peterson, Portland Timbers/Thorns, Portland Firefighters IAFF L43, Northwest Labor Council, UFCW 555, SEIU, AFSCME 189, Willamette Week, The Portland Tribune.
  • Teressa Raiford: Philanthropist, Trauma-Informed Advocate, and Community Organizer.  Endorsed by: Universal Preschool NOW, see other endorsements here.
  • Sarah Iannarone: Teacher, Policy Advisor.  Endorsed by: The Portland Mercury, Portland Tenants United, Sunrise Movement PDX, Oregon Progressive Party, see other endorsements here.
  • Ozzie González: Sustainability and Diversity Consultant. Endorsed by: Fred Miller, Alliance Party of Oregon, LatinoBuilt, see other endorsements here.

City Commissioners (City Council Members)
Commissioner, Position 1 
Incumbent Amanda Fritz is not seeking re-election.

Commissioner, Position 2 Incumbent Nick Fish passed away in January. If no one candidate receives over 50% of the vote, there will be a special election before November for the top two vote-getters.

  • Dan Ryan: Candidate. Endorsed by Willamette Week, Portland Tribune see other endorsements here.
  • Margot Black: Co-Chair Portland Tenants United; Community Organizer. Endorsed by Portland Tenants United, see other endorsements here.
  • Tera Hurst: Renew Oregon, Executive Director. Endorsed by Portland Mercury, NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon, see other endorsements here.
  • Julia DeGraw: Nonprofit/Policy Consultant. Endorsed by Portland Tenants United, Portland City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty, AFSCME Local 189, Portland Association of Teachers, PROTEC17, The Street Trust Action Fund, Oregon Progressive Party, Portland Community College Faculty & Staff Unions, Sunrise Movement PDX, PDX Clean Air, APANO, see other endorsements here.
  • Aquiles Montas: Family Engagement/Resource Administrator, Portland Metropolitan Family Services.
  • Loretta Smith: Small Business Owner, Community Affairs. Endorsed by Former State Senators Avel Gordly & Margaret Carter, United Food and Commercial Workers Union, Local #555, Clackamas County Commissioner Ken Humbertson, Human Trafficking Advocate Wynne Wakkila, Robert Phillips, Former Portland NAACP President.
  • Ryan A Farmer: Attorney/Candidate
  • Jeff Lang:  Risk Management Insurance Consultant. On April 28th, Jeff Lang withdrew from the race and endorsed Julia DeGraw.
  • James (Jas) Davis: Small business Owner, Awakenings Wellness Center.
  • Jack Kerfoot: Energy expert on national radio and TV.
  • Sam Chase: Metro Councilor. Endorsed by Home Builders Association, APANO, PDX Clean Air, The Street Trust Action Fund, Teamsters #37, see other endorsements here.
  • Cynthia Castro: Analyst. Endorsed by Hillsboro City Councilor Olivia Alcaire, Terri Preeg Riggsby – Director Zone 5 West Multnomah Soil & Water Conservation District, see other endorsements here.
  • Walter Wesley: Distributor of Medical Grade Filtration/Alkalizing/ionization Home Drinking Water Systems.
  • Terry Parker: Retired.
  • Ronault (Polo) Catalani: Civil rights lawyer; immigrant integration consultant; journalist.

Commissioner, Position 4

  • **Chloe Eudaly: elected as Commissioner in 2016. Endorsed by Portland Mercury, Portland Tenants United, Portland Tenants United, Oregon Progressive Party, Portland Association of Teachers, Community Alliance of Tenants Action Fund, Sunrise PDX, OurRevolution, APANO, U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley,  U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, Congressman Earl Blumenauer, Representative Diego Hernandez, Metro President Lynn Peterson, City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty, see other endorsements here.
  • Mingus Mapps: Community Organizer. Endorsed by Portland Community College Federation of Faculty and Academic Professionals, Columbia Pacific Building Trades, Portland Metropolitan Association of REALTORS, see other endorsements here.
  • Seth Alan Woolley:  Doppler Weather Radar Software Engineer. Endorsed by Oregon Progressive Party, Portland Clean Air.
  • Keith Wilson:  President, TITAN Freight Systems. Endorsed by Portland Tribune, see other endorsements here.
  • Sam Adams:  Public Policy and Government Improvement Consultant. Endorsed by Willamette Week, see other endorsements here.

Metro is the regional government serving Clackamas, Multnomah, and Washington counties. The Metro Council consists of a president and six councilors. All positions are 4-year terms, with three councilor positions up for reelection each two years. Metro is responsible for managing the Portland Metro Area’s solid waste system, a regional parks and natural areas system, and the Oregon Zoo, Oregon Convention Center, Portland’s Centers for the Arts, and the Portland Expo Center. 

Councilor, District 3: Incumbent Craig Dirksen is not seeking re-election. 

  • Gerritt Rosenthal: Environmental Consultant/ Teacher – Retired
  • Alison Balbag: Professor; Musician; Healthspan-Gerontologist; Researcher & Advocate
  • Tom Anderson: Real Estate Broker
  • Patricia A Kepler: Accessibility Specialist, Portland Community College

Councilor, District 5: Incumbent Sam Chase is not seeking re-election.

  • Chris Smith: retired
  • Karen Spencer: Co-Founder Searchfunder.com and mentor, helping small business, women and minority entrepreneurs access expertise and capital for success
  • Cameron Whitten: Executive Director, Brown Hope
  • Mary Peveto: Founder & Executive Director, Neighbors for Clean Air
  • Mary Nolan: Director, Unitus Community Credit Union; Director, Teatro Milagro; Advisor, OHSU Avel Gordly Center for Healing

Councilor, District 6


Measure 26-209: Renew Motor Vehicle Fuel Tax for Street Repair, Maintenance, Safety: Shall Portland renew four-year, 10 cents per gallon fuel tax for maintenance (paving, potholes) and safety (crossings, lighting, sidewalks)? Portland’s 10 cents per gallon fuel tax was approved by voters in 2016. If renewed at the same tax rate, this measure is estimated to raise $74.5 million over four years, beginning January 2021. Endorsed by: Willamette Week, Portland Mercury, Portland Tribune, Bike Portland, Oregon Walks, APANO, The Rosewood Initiative, The Street Trust, Verde, Portland Business Alliance, Business for a Better Portland, AARP, Neighbors for Clean AirSee all the endorsements here!

Measure 26-210: Supports homeless services through higher earners’ tax, business profits tax:  Should Metro support homeless services, tax income over $200,000/$125,000(joint/single), profits on businesses with income over $5 million?  Measure funds supportive housing services to prevent and reduce homelessness in Washington, Clackamas, and Multnomah counties within district boundaries. Endorsed by: Willamette Week, Portland Mercury, Kaiser Permanente, Portland Business Alliance, Portland Timbers & Thorns, Portland Trail Blazers, New Seasons Market, Oregon Food Bank, YWCA, Business for a Better Portland, Latino Network, Street Roots, APANO see other endorsements here.

Centennial School District: Measure 26-208: Authorizes General Obligation Bonds for School Security and Facility Improvements:  Shall the District issue $65,000,000 bonds for school security and facility improvements and receive a $7,494,690 State matching grant? If the bonds are approved, they will be payable from taxes on property or property ownership that are not subject to the limits of sections 11 and 11b, Article XI of the Oregon Constitution. It is estimated that this measure would not increase current tax rates due to the expiration of existing debt. Endorsed by: Home Builders Association of Metropolitan Portland, Centennial Education Association, The Rosewood Initiative.

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