Secretary of State, Democrat: Mark Hass

Alright, this one is a stretch for an endorsement in Stabtown, but one candidate’s views make it necessary. Vote for Mark Hass so that Shemia Fagan isn’t elected.

Oregon’s secretary of state historically has almost been a nonpartisan job. We wish it were on the ballot that way. Manage elections fairly and conduct independent audits of government programs. Straightforward enough. Four years ago, Oregonians elected Republican Dennis Richardson precisely because his Democratic opponent wanted to turn the office into a platform for advocacy from the left.

Now Fagan wants to be an aggressive advocate for progressive policies, not an evenhanded neutral officer. “In any executive position, your job is to use the power of the bully pulpit, to use the ability to go statewide with a message and an easier time getting onto media to basically push forward the policies that you want to see changed,” she told OPB.

That’s a fundamental misunderstanding of this crucial office. If the secretary of state is a hardline Democratic partisan, what reason should Republicans and non-affiliated voters ever think that elections will be administered fairly and that government will be audited without bias toward Democratic constituencies like public employee unions? Don’t look for an audit of homelessness spending in Stabtown if she’s elected, at least not a good one. Fagan is a dangerous choice for the integrity of Oregon government.

Hass, on the other hand, seems to get it. He’s been a solid member of the Legislature for 20 years, first in the house than in the Senate. He’s the right choice for Democrats in their closed primary. We’ll reassess the general election in the fall.

The third candidate in the race is a carpetbagger from California who desperately wants to hold office in Oregon. She doesn’t deserve serious consideration.

Vote for Mark Hass.

Mark Hass