Sen. Kim Thatcher wins Independent Primary for Secretary of State

In a tweet posted earlier today, the Independent Party of Oregon confirmed that their primary election results reported on May 19th did not change.

Those election night results showed State Senator Kim Thatcher (R-Keizer) scoring the highest number of points in the first round of ranked voting. Thatcher then won the most votes in the second round runoff phase against Ken Smith, an Independent candidate for Secretary of State.

Thatcher advances to the November election with the Independent and Republican nominations for Secretary of State. She will face State Senator Shemia Fagan (D-Portland) who won the Democratic primary with fraudulent and unethical campaign tactics. Fagan came in fifth out of six candidates in the Independent primary and did not advance to the runoff.

Fagan barely edged out Rich Vial who attempted to mount a comeback bid as an Independent candidate for Secretary of State. Vial left the Republican Party to run. In January, Vial resigned his position as Deputy Secretary of State after negative press scrutiny around continuing to work as a lawyer despite his full-time work in his appointed position for Secretary Bev Clarno. Vial received that appointment after losing re-election to the Oregon House in 2018 as a Republican.

In the first round of primary voting, eligible voters ranked the candidates on a scale of preference (zero to five). The two candidates with the most total points advance to the runoff. The zero to five preferences are converted to votes for the candidate voters scored the highest among the two runoff candidates.

The Independent primary was conducted online using the STAR voting system. The Independent Party of Oregon is considered a minor party because their membership makes up less than 5% of registered voters in the state, which is necessary to qualify under Oregon law for a printed ballot primary to be conducted by state and county election officials.

Registered Independent party and nonaffiliated Oregon voters were allowed to participate in the STAR voting system. Voters were verified based on a valid form of government identification.

You can read more about how the STAR voting system works on their website.