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The Oregon Republican Party is battling the state over its decision to block a voter statement in a ballot pamphlet because it was allegedly turned in late.
The Oregon GOP filed a lawsuit demanding that its official statement be included in the voters’ guide that will be getting printed later this month. But state officials claimed that the party’s statement came 29 seconds too late and missed the deadline to be added, according to the Associated Press.
(Source: Fox News)
Republican congressional candidate Alek Skarlatos warned that the omission could hurt the party “significantly” at the ballot box, noting in a Fox News interview that waiting until the last minute to submit is something that “does happen pretty frequently” and is for “strategic reasons.”
The state, he contended, has had a “history” of having its website fail and that was the case again as the GOP party attempted to get its statement submitted into the online system by 4:59 p.m. on the last day for filing which was Aug. 25.
“Anyone wishing to submit information to the Voters’ Pamphlet has several weeks to do so and we recommend avoiding waiting until the last minute for this reason,” Laura Fosmire, a spokeswoman for Secretary of State Bev Clarno, said in a statement, according to AP.
But Republican communications director Kevin Hoar insisted the statement was submitted on time.
“We can’t quite explain the interpretation and decision here,” he told Oregon Public Broadcasting. “That’s why we’ve gone to court.”
Republican Chairman Bill Currier, who reportedly could not get into the online system for several hours as the deadline approached, slammed the decision, telling Oregon Public Radio that it “reeks of partisan discrimination.”
“If a bureaucrat in some decision-making role simply didn’t like what our statement said, this doesn’t give them the right to silence us,” he said in a statement.
Fosmire pushed back, however, claiming there were “no problems or glitches” with the system, and the office “simply received the statement after the filing deadline.”
The statement to be included in the pamphlet reportedly read: “Had enough? Vote Republican.”
“Honestly, I don’t think they need to convince a whole lot of people that if you’ve had enough, vote Republican,” Skarlatos said Monday on Fox News.
The 27-year-old former Oregon National Guardsman is a hero after he became world-famous for his part in thwarting a terrorist attack on a Paris-bound train in 2015. Skarlatos and his two friends who stopped the gunman’s planned attack played themselves in the 2018 Clint Eastwood film “The 15:17 to Paris.”
The Oregon native, who served in Afghanistan and was awarded a Soldier’s Medal from former President Barack Obama, is running to unseat incumbent Democratic Rep. Peter DeFazio.
He was asked Monday how the recent violent protests in cities like Portland have affected his race.
“Well I think people see the direction the Democrat Party is heading and I don’t think it’s so much the riots as people see the riots and then see that the Democrats are the same party, they want to take away your guns and defund the police at the same time,” he said.
“So I don’t think it really has so much to do with the riots as the Democrats reaction to it and that’s what’s so scary, and that what’s going to push a lot of those non-affiliated moderate and soft Democrat voters hopefully over to the Republican Party,” Skarlatos added.
He called out Oregon officials again for the faulty website and ongoing issues which he said have been a problem before.
“They know this happens frequently, and this isn’t just a single candidate. This is an entire party platform,” he said.
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