Oregon Legislature

Oregon Department of Corrections: Criminal Alien Report March 2019

The Oregon Department of Corrections (DOC) March 1, 2019 Inmate Population Profile indicated there were 14,724 inmates incarcerated in the DOC’s 14 prisons.

Data obtained from the DOC indicated that on March 1st there were 901 foreign nationals (criminal aliens) incarcerated in the state’s prison system; criminal aliens were 6.12 percent of the total prison population.

Some background information, all the criminal aliens incarcerated in the DOC prison system were identified by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and have ICE detainers placed on them.

Using DOC Inmate Population Profiles and ICE detainer numbers, the following table reveals the total number inmates, the number of domestic and criminal alien inmates along with the percentage of inmates with ICE detainers incarcerated on March 1st in the state’s prisons.
 

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

Month/Day/Year

DOC Total Number Inmates

DOC Total Number Domestic Inmates

DOC Total Number Inmates W/ICE Detainers

DOC Percent Inmates W/ICE Detainers

March 1, 2019

14,724

13,823

901

6.12%

Source: Research and Evaluation DOC Report ICE inmates list 01 March 19 and Inmate Population Profile 01 March 19.

Using DOC ICE detainer numbers, the following table reveals the number and percentage of criminal alien prisoners incarcerated on March 1st that were sent  to prison from the state’s 36 counties.
 

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

County

DOC Total Number Inmates W/ ICE Detainers by County

DOC Percent Inmates W/ICE Detainers by County

Marion

220

24.42%

Washington

188

20.87%

Multnomah

169

18.76%

Clackamas

77

8.55%

Lane

40

4.44%

Jackson

34

3.77%

Umatilla

26

2.89%

Yamhill

21

2.33%

Linn

17

1.89%

Benton

13

1.44%

Polk

13

1.44%

Deschutes

11

1.22%

Klamath

11

1.22%

Malheur

9

1.00%

Jefferson

8

0.89%

Lincoln

7

0.78%

Tillamook

5

0.55%

Clatsop

4

0.44%

Josephine

4

0.44%

Wasco

4

0.44%

Coos

3

0.33%

Douglas

3

0.33%

Hood River

3

0.33%

Columbia

2

0.22%

Morrow

2

0.22%

Union

2

0.22%

Baker

1

0.11%

Crook

1

0.11%

Gilliam

1

0.11%

Lake

1

0.11%

OOS (Not a County)

1

0.11%

Curry

0

0.00%

Grant

0

0.00%

Harney

0

0.00%

Sherman

0

0.00%

Wallowa

0

0.00%

Wheeler

0

0.00%

Total

901

100.00%

Source: Research and Evaluation DOC Report ICE inmates list 01 March 19.

Here are the ways Oregon residents were victimized by the 901 criminal aliens.

Using DOC ICE detainer numbers, the following table reveals the number and percentage of criminal alien prisoners incarcerated on March 1st by type of crime.
 

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

Crime

DOC Total Number Inmates W/ ICE Detainers by Type of Crime

DOC Percent Inmates W/ICE Detainers by Type of Crime

Sex Abuse

184

20.42%

Rape

168

18.65%

Homicide

130

14.43%

Sodomy

98

10.88%

Assault

83

9.21%

Drugs

73

8.10%

Robbery

44

4.88%

Kidnapping

26

2.89%

Burglary

21

2.33%

Theft

16

1.78%

Driving Offense

4

0.44%

Vehicle Theft

3

0.33%

Arson

1

0.11%

Escape

0

0.00%

Forgery

0

0.00%

Other / Comb. Crimes

50

5.55%

Total

901

100.00%

Source: Research and Evaluation DOC Report ICE inmates list 01 March 19.

Using the DOC Inmate Population Profile and ICE detainer numbers from March 1st, the following table reveals the total number inmates by crime type, the number of domestic and criminal alien prisoners incarcerated by type of crime and the percentage of those crimes committed by criminal aliens.
 

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

Crime

DOC Total Number Inmates by Type of Crime

DOC Total Number Domestic Inmates by Type of Crime

DOC Total Number Inmates W/ICE Detainers by Type of Crime

DOC Inmates W/ICE Detainers as a Percent of Total Inmates by Type of Crime

Sex Abuse

1,770

1,586

184

10.40%

Rape

985

817

168

17.06%

Homicide

1,782

1,652

130

7.30%

Sodomy

1,048

950

98

9.35%

Assault

2,040

1,957

83

4.07%

Drugs

906

833

73

8.06%

Robbery

1,438

1,394

44

3.06%

Kidnapping

274

248

26

9.49%

Burglary

1,245

1,224

21

1.69%

Theft

963

947

16

1.66%

Driving Offense

245

241

4

1.63%

Vehicle Theft

548

545

3

0.55%

Arson

84

83

1

1.19%

Escape

36

36

0

0.00%

Forgery

52

52

0

0.00%

Other / Comb. Crimes

1,308

1,258

50

3.82%

Total

14,724

13,823

901

 

Source: Research and Evaluation DOC Report ICE inmates list 01 March 19 and Inmate Population Profile 01 March 19.

Using DOC ICE detainer numbers, the following table reveals the self-declared countries of origin of the 901 criminal alien prisoners by number and percentage incarcerated on March 1st in the state’s prisons.
 

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

Country

DOC Total Number Inmates W/ ICE Detainers by Self-Declared Country of Origin

DOC Percent Inmates W/ICE Detainers by Self-Declared Country of Origin

Mexico

720

79.91%

Guatemala

22

2.44%

Cuba

16

1.78%

El Salvador

13

1.44%

Honduras

12

1.33%

Vietnam

12

1.33%

Laos

7

0.78%

Federated States of Micronesia

6

0.67%

Russia

6

0.67%

Ukraine

6

0.67%

Canada

5

0.55%

Cambodia

4

0.44%

China

3

0.33%

Ecuador

3

0.33%

Marshall Islands

3

0.33%

Peru

3

0.33%

Thailand

3

0.33%

Other / Unknown Countries

57

6.33%

Total

901

100.00%

Source: Research and Evaluation DOC Report ICE inmates list 01 March 19.

Beyond the DOC criminal alien incarceration numbers and incarceration percentages, per county and per crime type, or even country of origin, criminal aliens place a substantial economic burden on Oregonians.

An individual prisoner incarcerated in the DOC prison system costs the state approximately ($108.26) per day.

The DOC’s incarceration cost for its 901 criminal alien prison population is approximately ($97,542.26) per day, ($682,795.82) per week, and ($35,602,924.90) per year.

None of preceding cost estimates for the DOC to incarcerate the 901 criminal aliens includes the dollar amount for legal services (indigent defense), language interpreters, court costs, or victim assistance.

Bibliography:

Oregon Department of Corrections Inmate Population Profile March 1, 2019.

Oregon Department of Corrections Population Profile (unpublished MS Excel workbook) titled Incarcerated Criminal Aliens Report dated March 1, 2019.

Oregon Department of Corrections Issue Brief Quick Facts, March 2019:
https://www.oregon.gov/doc/Documents/agency-quick-facts.pdf

David Olen Cross of Salem, Oregon is crime researcher who writes on immigration issues and foreign national crime. The preceding report is a service to Oregon state, county and city governmental officials to help them assess the impact of foreign national crime in the state. He can be reached at docfnc@yahoo.com. His past crime reports can be found at http://docfnc.wordpress.com/.

Let voters decide who gets driver's license

Alert date: 
2019-04-18
Alert body: 

Responsible citizens should step forward, defend government by the people, and demand that the Legislature refer House Bill 2015 to a vote of rank-and-file Oregonians.

By Richard LaMountain, in Portland Tribune, Thursday, April 18, 2019


In 1902, Oregonians approved an amendment to their state Constitution giving rank-and-file voters the power of referendum — the ability to seek to put bills passed by state lawmakers directly before their fellow citizens for a vote.

Today, however, Oregon's Legislature — the very institution the referendum was designed to curb — stands ready to dismiss a decision those citizens made via referendum barely four years ago.

Rep. Diego Hernandez, D-Portland, has introduced House Bill 2015 to offer driving privileges to illegal immigrants. If approved by the House and Senate and signed by Gov. Kate Brown, the bill will nullify the overwhelming mandate against those privileges that Oregonians delivered in 2014 via Ballot Measure 88, a citizen-initiated referendum.

The Legislature's Democrats are solidly behind the bill; as they outnumber Republicans 38-to-22 in the House and 18-to-12 in the Senate, its passage appears certain.

Rather than approve House Bill 2015 and send it to the governor, however, lawmakers should refer it to a vote of the people.

For the reason why, consider some recent history. In April 2013, the House voted 38-to-20 and the Senate 20-to-7 to pass Senate Bill 833, which would have offered four-year driver cards to illegal immigrants. On May Day of that year, then-Gov. John Kitzhaber signed the bill.

Over the next four months, Oregonians opposed to its enactment collected the signatures of more than 70,000 registered voters. In doing so, they succeeded in referring the bill to the November 2014 ballot as Ballot Measure 88, to be approved or rejected by their fellow Oregonians.

Over the next year, driver cards' supporters and opponents inundated rank-and-file Oregonians with information and arguments.

The result? On Election Day, voters rejected illegal-immigrant driver cards by the same 2-to-1 margin by which their legislators had approved them.

On this issue, then, our state's system of direct, citizen-initiated democracy manifested a yawning chasm between Oregonians and its lawmakers.

Today, it appears, that chasm remains.

Late last month, Zogby Analytics released the results of a poll, conducted March 18 and 19, of 500 likely Oregon voters. Its major findings:

• 63% oppose, and 30% support, granting driver's licenses to illegal immigrants. This is virtually identical to the outcome of Ballot Measure 88: 66% against driver cards, and 34% in favor.

• 68.4% believe the Legislature "must respect the decisions made by the voters through the ballot initiative process." Only 18.7% believe the Legislature should enact policies "that have been previously overturned by the voters."

Given this, should voters' rejection of illegal-immigrant driving privileges now be cast aside — by the very lawmakers, indeed, the voters rebuked for approving those privileges in the first place?

Legislative Democrats premise their support of House Bill 2015 on the same criteria they did a half-decade ago: that illegal-immigrant driving privileges will enhance road safety and enable "Oregonians" (their euphemism for foreigners here illegally) to travel more easily to work, school and church.

If they have confidence in these arguments, they should have the courage — the Zogby poll notwithstanding — to introduce them in the court of public opinion and to make their case directly to voters.

If, however, the Legislature and governor enact the bill outright — knowing full well it will negate the mandate against illegal-immigrant driving privileges their constituents delivered but four years ago — they will betray Oregon's system of direct, citizen-initiated democracy and demonstrate contempt for the judgment of the people they are elected to represent. This will compromise the credibility and, indeed, legitimacy of our state's government.

Responsible citizens should step forward, defend government by the people, and demand that the Legislature refer House Bill 2015 to a vote of rank-and-file Oregonians.

Richard F. LaMountain, a former vice president of Oregonians for Immigration Reform, was a chief sponsor of 2014's Ballot Measure 88. He lives in Cedar Mill.

Hearing on HB 2015 is scheduled for Wednesday, April 17, at 5 pm.

Alert date: 
2019-04-11
Alert body: 

A hearing has now been announced on HB 2015, the so-called Equal Access to the Roads Act of 2019, which overturns the successful Referendum of 2014 that nullified an earlier attempt to give driver licenses to illegal aliens.

The Hearing, by the Joint Transportation Committee, is scheduled for Wednesday, April 17, at 5 pm, in Hearing Room F at the State Capitol.   If you can attend and speak to the Committee in opposition, please do.

Please contact your state legislators also, and voice your opposition. 

We have good evidence that the public does NOT support the continuing effort to erase the requirement for citizenship or legal status to obtain an official i.d. or driver license. 

A new statewide poll of likely voters finds that Oregonians still overwhelmingly oppose granting driver’s licenses to illegal aliens.  OFIR members and other citizens can cite the poll when contacting their legislators in opposition to HB 2015.

According to this poll, commissioned by the Federation for American Immigration Reform and conducted by Zogby Analytics on March 18 and 19, voters continue to oppose granting driver’s licenses to illegal aliens by a 63 percent to 30 percent margin. Voters even more emphatically reject a new effort by the Legislature and Gov. Kate Brown to override the will of the people who defeated Measure 88 in 2014. That ballot measure struck down a similar law enacted by the Legislature in 2013.

Today, 68.4 percent of voters believe that the Legislature “must respect the decisions made by the voters through the ballot initiative process,” compared with just 18.7 percent who think the Legislature has the right to enact laws “that have been previously overturned by the voters.”

OFIR President Cynthia Kendoll’s comment: “The people have spoken. The Legislature and the governor do not like what they had to say, so they are demonstrating their contempt for the people of Oregon with a blatant attempt to overrule the outcome of democratic election. This sort of arrogance of power is the hallmark of authoritarian dictatorships, not the progressivism that Oregon likes to project to the world.”

Adding to the arrogance of state leaders promoting HB 2015 is that the Equal Access to the Roads Act bill is being proclaimed to be so urgent that an “emergency” clause has been attached, which would prevent opponents of the bill from blocking its implementation through another citizen's veto referendum. “Frankly, the voters shouldn’t have to say no again. They already have – very loudly, very clearly, and not very long ago. Members of the Legislature don’t have to like it. Gov. Brown doesn’t have to like it. But they should respect the decision of the voters,” said Kendoll.

The poll data should serve as a warning to elected officials in the state. A 63.5 percent majority of Oregon voters indicated that they would be less likely to vote for legislators who defy the will of the people on this issue, including 46.5 percent who said they would be “much less likely” to vote for such public officials. Only 11.8 percent said such action would make them more likely to vote for such legislators.

The full results of the statewide poll of Oregon voters can be found at:  https://fairus.org/sites/default/files/2019-03/Oregon%20Driver%27s%20License%202019.toplines.pdf

If you need additional ideas for opposition statements, please view the Protect Oregon Driver Licenses website.  This page may be especially helpful:  https://www.protectoregondl.org/info/consequences/sb833-bad-for-oregon

HB 2932, sanctuary for criminal aliens

Alert date: 
2019-03-22
Alert body: 

A hearing on HB 2932 was held on Monday, March 18, by the House Judiciary Committee.  Several OFIR Board members attended and testified in opposition, submitting written testimony also.

OFIR has posted the testimonies at:  http://www.oregonir.org/immigration-topics/sanctuary-bill-2019-legislature.

A videotape of the Hearing can be viewed at: http://oregon.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?clip_id=26213

We encourage citizens to express their views of this bill to their state Representatives.  To identify your state Representative and get phone number/email address, click here:  https://www.oregonlegislature.gov/FindYourLegislator/leg-districts.html.  After entering your address in the format requested, see the address card and click the tab labelled House.

Bad bills in Legislature – Read This

Alert date: 
2019-03-16
Alert body: 

Two very bad bills have been introduced in the current session of the Oregon Legislature.

HB 2932 “prohibits courts from inquiring into defendant's immigration status or requiring defendant to disclose defendant's immigration status at time of plea or at any other time during criminal proceeding.  Requires court to allow defendant, upon request, additional time for plea decision after informing defendant about possible adverse immigration consequences of plea. Declares emergency, effective on passage.”

This bill to protect illegal aliens and legitimize illegal immigration, opening our borders to the world without limit, has 26 sponsors, all Democrats, and may be fast-tracked through the Legislature as certain bills were done in the previous session.

A hearing is scheduled for Monday, March 18, at 1 p.m. by the House Judiciary Committee, which has 11 members, 8 Democrats and 3 Republicans.  There seems little doubt the Committee will approve the bill and send it on to the Legislature for a vote.

Please contact your State Representative and urge him/her to oppose this bill. Whether your Representative is a Democrat, a Republican, or other, it’s worthwhile to express your view.  

You can see an Overview of the bill at:  https://olis.leg.state.or.us/liz/2019R1/Measures/Overview/HB2932, and you can sign up there (in upper right corner) to receive notices of further action on the bill.

Statements by citizens on Legislative bills can be emailed to the Committee that’s hearing the bill (if a hearing has been scheduled.)  The email address for such statements is given on the Committee’s website.  Here’s an example of one filed that way:  https://olis.leg.state.or.us/liz/2019R1/Downloads/CommitteeMeetingDocument/173965. Other citizen statements on HB 2932 will appear as they are submitted.  You can check back here to follow them:  https://olis.leg.state.or.us/liz/2019R1/Committees/HJUD/2019-03-18-13-00/HB2932/Details

------------

Another bad bill related to immigration which is of concern now is HB 2015It “eliminates requirement that person provide proof of legal presence before Department of Transportation issues noncommercial driver license, noncommercial driver permit or identification card.  Becomes operative January 1, 2021. Declares emergency, effective on passage.”

See Overview of the bill at:  https://olis.leg.state.or.us/liz/2019R1/Measures/Overview/HB2015?pubDate=2019-03-04-16-33.  It was referred to the House Transportation Committee where a hearing has not yet been scheduled.  You can receive notices of actions on this bill by clicking the top-right link on the Overview page.

Enthusiasm is contagious!

OFIR hosted their first membership meeting of the New Year on Saturday, Feb. 16.

How amazing, that even after the disappointing defeat of Measure 105, folks were full of enthusiasm and energy to move forward.

What a great group of folks - we look forward to what 2019 will bring!  If you are interested in making a difference, please join us as we work to save our state and our country from unfettered illegal immigration and excessive legal imigration.

Sign up for our OFIR email alerts and plan to attend our next meeting Saturday, May 11, 2019 - get involved and learn how you can make a difference!
 

ODOC counts illegal alien inmates

SALEM, Oregon – The Oregon Department of Corrections reports that of Oregon’s 14,780 prison inmates, 909 of them are illegal aliens identified by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and have ICE detainers placed on them. The undocumented aliens in prison constitute 6.15 percent of the total prison population.

Illegal aliens convicted in Umatilla County number 25, or 2.75 percent. That’s seventh highest among Oregon counties. Marion County has the highest number – 222 inmates accounting for 24.42 percent. It’s followed by Washington (192), Multnomah (172), Clackamas (76), Lane (42), and Jackson (33) counties. In Eastern Oregon, only Morrow and Union counties show up in the count, each with two illegal aliens convicted there.

Statewide, 189 of those inmates have been convicted of sex abuse, 169 of rape, and 131 of homicide. Sodomy is the charge against 99 of them. The rest committed numerous other crimes including drugs, assault, kidnapping and burglary.

Of the inmates convicted in Umatilla County, homicide is the most frequent charge with nine convicted. Several were convicted of sex crimes. Other offenses include assault, drugs, and kidnapping.

A total of 726 of the ICE-detained inmates, or 79.87 percent are from Mexico. Twenty two are from Guatemala, 15 from Cuba, 14 from Vietnam, 13 from El Salvador, and 11 from Honduras. Other countries with single-digit numbers are Laos, Federated States of Micronesia, Russia, Canada, Ukraine, Cambodia, China, Ecuador, Peru, and South Korea. A total of 62 of them have not declared their country of origin.
 

Candidate information available for May 15 primary

Ballots for the May 15, 2018 primary election are arriving in the mailboxes of Oregon’s registered voters.

OFIR has now posted information on the immigration positions of many candidates running in the primary. Please take a moment to look over the information before you fill out your ballot.

The offices for which informational reports are available on the OFIR website are:

Governor

Commissioner of Labor and Industries

Congressional candidates

Oregon House candidates (HD 09, HD 18, HD 19, HD 20, HD 23, HD 26)

Oregon Senate candidates (SD 3, SD 4)

Much of the information came from answers to questions in the 2018 survey of the Oregon Abigail Adams Voter Education Project. It contained a list of questions covering many political issues, including three questions on immigration policy for Governor and Legislative candidates and six questions for Congressional candidates. 

See the OAAVEP immigration questions listed in OFIR’s Overview for the Primary.  Other candidate information came from candidates’ websites, news articles, and official (OLIS) records of votes by incumbent legislators.   

 

A good bill went awry in the Legislature; consequences follow

You can trace the course of HB 4111 in the just-closed session of the Oregon Legislature and learn a lot about how political ball is being played there now to serve entrenched interests.

A perfectly good bill relating to Department of Transportation documents, which described “fees required when person is applying to replace or renew current driver license with Real ID compliant driver license or is applying for new original driver license that is Real ID compliant” was hi-jacked by means of an amendment and converted into yet another benefit — official driver licenses — for a group of illegal aliens.  This benefit can reverberate in future elections also unless voter registration processes are tightened.

The bill was Pre-Session filed, and originally sponsored by several Democrats and one Republican, Rep. Carl Wilson, of Grants Pass.  After the hi-jacking into a benefit for illegal aliens, Rep. Wilson removed his name from sponsorship and spoke against HB 4111.  As passed on March 3, HB 4111 was sponsored by these legislators, all Democrats:  Reps. Witt, Hernandez, Alonso Leon, Greenlick, Keny-Guyer, Salinas, Sanchez, Sollman, Williamson, and Senators Gelser and Manning. 

The maneuver to change the bill was accomplished through a Senate amendment referred to as Dash-10 in legislative lingo.  Then the bill incorporating “Dash-10” was put before the House for a final vote on Saturday afternoon, March 3, in the waning hours of the session

The claim is that “Dash-10” applies only to persons enrolled in the DACA and TPS programs, but those programs are not mentioned in the bill, and the bill contains other provisions that appear to weaken requirements for verification of applications.

OFIR President Cynthia Kendoll watched the action:   “… they introduced the amendment as Dash -2, with Rep. Hernandez as the sponsor - and then pulled it – and then, re-introduced it as Dash-10 - with the Senate Transportation Committee as the sponsor, then pulled it again ‘for negotiations,’ then, submitted the bill to the Senate with the amendment ‘engrossed’ in the bill.  It seems at every turn, and with virtually NO notice, the effort was made to obscure the fact that forces were at work behind the scenes to ADD driver cards for illegal aliens to HB4111.  Several people told me they went to OLIS and saw no amendment - so, ultimately did not submit comments - or call in about it.  Would we call that a slight of hand?”

Originally, the bill was introduced in the House on February 5.  The House considered the bill and passed it, without changing the text.  Then it went to the Senate where advocates for benefits to illegal aliens succeeded through “Dash-10” in turning the bill into a tool to suit their purposes.  It passed the Senate by a vote of 20-8, with 2 members not voting.  All Democrats present voted Yes, along with 4 Republicans, Senators DeBoer, Hansell, Thompson, and Winters.

Because the Senate amendment had changed the bill, it had to go back to the House for a final vote, 36-22.  Again, all Democrats voted Yes.  One Republican voted Yes, Rep. Richard Vial, who represents Sherwood, Wilsonville and Gaston.  All other Republicans present voted No.

OFIR President Cynthia Kendoll submitted testimony to the Senate Committee on Business and Transportation hearing on Feb. 26.  Her statement to the Committee can be read here.

OFIR Board member Mark Callahan gave oral testimony which can viewed in the Legislative video recording of Committee proceedings at: http://oregon.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=6&clip_id=24705.  He appears at about 6:35 in the video, speaking for approximately 2 minutes.  He entered into the Committee record a colorful chart  showing M88 vote results statewide; see it here

OFIR Board member Janice Dysinger submitted testimony also.  For some time, Ms. Dysinger, has been involved in research on the conduct of state elections and is active in Oregonians for Fair Elections, a citizen group working to protect the integrity of our state’s elections.  Her detailed statement to the Senate Committee on Business and Transportation on Feb. 26, raised many good questions about voter registration in Oregon and how it would be impacted by HB 4111.  See her statement here.

The only person who submitted testimony in favor of HB 4111 was Andrea Williams, Executive Director, Causa Oregon.   She wrote a letter that was entered into the record.

While Secretary of State Richardson recently gave Oregon’s voting system a clean bill of health, it’s clear that the registration processes can easily be corrupted and probably are, to an extent far beyond what the public is led to believe. There’s a high probability that HB 4111 would make the problem of illegal voting worse.

WHAT CAN WE DO TO GET OREGON ON THE RIGHT TRACK?

To OFIR members who feel discouraged after the passage of HB 4111 – remember – that is not the final move in immigration policy.  The route to change is open to us, in election of legislators who understand the importance of immigration controls and will put the interests of U.S. citizens first. 
 
Already through an informed and civic-minded citizenry, the U.S. has elected a President who believes in vigorous immigration law enforcement.  Other states are cooperating in the effort, and Oregon has shown broad support in the 2014 vote on Measure 88. 

Primary elections are coming up soon -- in May.  With members’ help, OFIR will provide information on the immigration positions of candidates, and members will have the opportunity to support good candidates and work to get them elected. The next session of the Legislature will convene in February 2019, after the November 2018 elections. 

You can view the candidate information that  OFIR posted on its website for the 2014 and 2016 elections here.  Many 2018 candidates for the Legislature and statewide offices have already replied to the 2018 Oregon Abigail Adams Voter Education Project questionnaire which includes questions on immigration policy.

Already candidates are speaking publicly and discussing issues; many have websites online.

In their candidacy websites, some candidates make their positions on immigration issues quite clear.  OFIR hopes to post all relevant information on its website for as many races as possible.   Three candidates for Governor who have good positions on immigration spoke at the February OFIR meeting. 

'Sanctuary State' Repeal Campaign Takes Advantage Of New Oregon Rule

Backers of a campaign to repeal an Oregon law that aids undocumented immigrants are taking advantage of new petition rules to make an early start on gathering the signatures they need to qualify for the 2018 ballot. [See the Stop Oregon Sanctuaries website.]

Cynthia Kendoll, president of Oregonians For Immigration Reform, says her group was unable to make the 2016 ballot with a pair of immigrant-related measures because their signature gathering was held up by lengthy legal fights over the wording of the ballot title.

Oregon Secretary of State Dennis Richardson last month began the process of changing the rules so that initiative campaigns for the first time could gather an unlimited number of signatures before the wording of the ballot title was hashed out.

That seemingly arcane change could have a major impact on initiative campaigns, particularly ones that don’t have a lot of money to flood the streets with paid petitioners.

Kendoll said that ballot title challenges “have become more about delaying the initiative process than they are about making certain that we have proper language” for explaining a measure for voters.

A coalition called One Oregon opposes changing the 30-year-old “Sanctuary State” law, which limits local and state police cooperation with federal immigration authorities. The group has also filed a legal appeal with the state Supreme Court challenging the ballot title, which is meant to be a neutral description of the initiative.

Andrea Williams is executive director of Causa, an immigrant rights group, and a leader of the One Oregon coalition.

She said that Kendoll’s group has started early enough that it could probably qualify for the ballot even without Richardson’s new rules. She said the group filed an appeal to get the most “accurate and clear” ballot title.

Kendoll acknowledged her group is taking some risk by going ahead with signature gathering before waiting for a ballot title. 

In particular, several groups have talked about mounting a legal challenge to Richardson’s rule change. Ben Unger is the executive director of Our Oregon, a labor-backed coalition group. He said the secretary of state’s office should start over on the rules change because it contained some procedural errors. And his group is also looking into whether Richardson actually has the authority to allow initiatives to collect signatures without having a ballot title affixed to the signature sheets.

Oregon law says that petitioners have to gather at least 1,000 signatures before they can get a ballot title.  Richardson used that language to say that he could change the rules to allow petitioners to gather as many as signatures as they want until a ballot title is finalized.

If the immigration measure qualifies for the ballot next year, it could attract national attention. A large number of cities and counties around the country — including 15 in Oregon, according to Williams — have “sanctuary” protections for immigrants.

Oregon has the only statewide law, although California legislators are working on a similar measure.

Kendoll said the Oregon law should be overturned so that law enforcement in the state can fully cooperate with immigration officials. She noted the local furor involving the case of Sergio Jose Martinez, accused of attacking two women in Portland last month after being released from custody in Multnomah County last December. Federal officials say they asked the county to hold Martinez, but Sheriff Mike Reese said the agency should have issued a criminal warrant.

Williams said the Oregon sanctuary law improves public safety by encouraging immigrants to cooperate with law enforcement without fear of deportation.

Sponsors of the initiative need to gather 88,184 valid signatures by next July to qualify for the November 2018 ballot.

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