Voters’ Guide

The next Oregon election is the May 17, 2022 Primary Election

You can find specific information about the May 2022 Primary here

Nonpartisan, Balanced Election Information

The League of Women Voters of Portland prepares nonpartisan information for every local and statewide election. Information about each election is posted on a special page on this website devoted to just that election. This page connects to the current election a short time before ballots are mailed. Usually ballots are mailed two and a half weeks before an election.

After you have filled out your ballot – Mail it or drop it off!

REMEMBER THAT WE VOTE BY MAIL. THE POSTAGE IS FREE. You don’t need a stamp, but your ballot must postmarked before or on Election Day. (This is a change in the mailing deadline effective January 2022.) Instead of mailing your ballot, you may drop it off at official ballot dropsite by 8 PM Election Day.

For all Primary and General Elections in even-numbered years, the League produces a printed Voters’ Guide in English and Spanish:

2020 print voters’ guides

Before all Multnomah County elections, the Portland League prepares independent, nonpartisan online and/or printed voting guides to give voters reliable information about candidates and ballot measures. League members ask the candidates substantive questions and publish their unedited responses in the guide. League members also research the ballot measures by reviewing extensive information about each measure and interviewing the organizations in support and opposition. We work to keep all the information in each Voters’ Guide balanced and fair

 

Personalized Vote411.org Voting Guides

 

The League can create a custom guide for you! Go to Vote411.org and enter your residence address to see  information about candidates and measures on your ballot for the current election. For this and many future elections Vote411.org has information in both English and Spanish. The same information that is in our printed voters’ guides is also on the Vote411.org website. Vote411.org also has videos of the candidate interviews from our Video Voters’ Guide and videos that the candidates themselves add.

Video Voters’ Guide

Video clip from May 2021 Video Voters’ Guide

Our Video Voters’ Guide features eight- to ten-minute interviews with candidates, running for office in Primary, General or Special Elections in Multnomah County. You can view the May Primary Election 2022 Video Voters’ Guide here. For the May 2022 Primary Election, we will add podcasts of candidate interviews.

Videos of voter forums

For most elections, the League also conducts one or more election forums. These are recorded and the videos are posted on this website and on Vote411.org.  We produced five voter forums for the 2022 Primary Election.  They are all posted under Voter Forums at the bottom of the May 17, 2022 Primary Election page here. (Scroll down to the bottom of that page to find the links.)

Clip from May 2021 Video Voter Forum for Portland School Board

In a forum, all the candidates for each position or advocates on both sides of each ballot measure are invited to answer questions. The candidates and speakers for each position (or measure) are asked similar questions and their responses are timed, so that they all have the same opportunity to respond. Voters are able to compare the candidates or the reasons to support or oppose each ballot measure.

MetroEast logoMetroEast Community Media helps us produce our Video Voters’ Guides and videos and podcasts of forums.                   

How we plan and conduct research for our voters’ guides and forums

Our printed Voters’ Guides, online VOTE411.org guide, video voters’ guides, voter forums and podcasts require months of planning. They are also based on years of experience and knowledge about how to make sure the guides are nonpartisan, accurate, and unbiased.

First, we go to the websites of the Secretary of State’s Elections Office and the Multnomah County Elections Division. There we find out which offices will be filled in the next election. We can also learn which measures have qualified to be on local election ballots.

Next, we write the questions for the candidates. Even before we know which candidates are running, we can compose appropriate questions for each of the positions to be filled. We start with the examples of questions we have asked previously. These are in our “Question Bank,” which you can read here. About four months before the next election, a group of League members who follow current issues gathers to write the candidate questions. They discuss and decide what the candidates in the upcoming election will have to face if they are elected. They ask, “What do we need to know about these candidates? What questions will show whether they can handle the demands of the offices they seek?” This group then frames questions that are open-ended and as fair as possible. The questions are approved by the LWV Board. Then, the day after the filing deadline, we send the relevant questions to all the candidates for each office. We want all the candidates to receive their questions at the same time.

For ballot measure research, we recruit League volunteers who have an interest or expertise on the subject of the measure. These volunteers contact experts or government officials who work in the agencies the measure will affect. They learn as much as possible about the current situation and how the measure would change it. The ballot measure researchers also contact both the advocates who support the measure and those who oppose it.  After the researchers write their draft reports, an editing committee reviews them. The editors suggest ways to improve the reports and make them as complete, fair and balanced as possible.

More Information

Speakers Bureau

Volunteers in our Speakers Bureau are trained to share well-researched, nonpartisan information.

To book a speaker contact us at info@lwvpdx.org or speakers@lwvpdx.org. We can provide online speakers via Zoom. 

Our speakers can address:

  • Voter registration and the mechanics of voting. Our speakers can help your audience register (or update their registrations).
  • Importance of voting and civic participation.
  • Activities and history of the League of Women Voters.
  • Local and state ballot measures (during election season). League speakers are trained to share balanced information that will help voters make informed choices on their ballots. Our presentations provide background information and discuss both pros and cons for each measure. For general elections, LWV speakers address between 20 and 40 groups of voters at churches, businesses, clubs and congregant living facilities. 
  • Any topic that the league has studied or taken a position on (see our web page “Where We Stand” under the Advocate tab above)

To schedule a League speaker for your group, please contact our office at 503-228-1675 or info@lwvpdx.org. Helpful details to provide when you contact us include:

  • Your Name, Phone Number, Email
  • Organization/Group name (and Website if you have one)
  • Proposed date, time, and location
  • Size of group (and any other notes about the potential audience you would like to provide.)
  • Topic(s) of interest

How to Judge a Candidate

How to judge a candidate

Voters ‘ Guides and Election Information for Previous Elections

For information on the November 2, 2021 Special Election in Fairview OR, click here.

The most recent major election affecting all of Multnomah County was a school board and special district election in May 2021. We did not have a printed voters’ guide for this election, but we had a lot of online information about the candidates and a Multnomah County measure. Ballots were sent to voters beginning April 28, 2021. We posted links to videos and written information on our May 2021 School Board/Special Districts Election web page.

NOVEMBER 3, 2020 GENERAL ELECTIONNovember General Election page  with candidate and measure information 

AUGUST 2020 SPECIAL ELECTION: August 11 Special Election video and candidate statements

MAY 2020 PRIMARY ELECTION: May 19, 2o2o Primary Election Voters’ Guide and videos