Elections, Oregon, USPS

A brief history of Oregon’s vote-by-mail system

Two ballots from a previous election. File photo: Chas Hundley

Voting by mail exclusively became the standard mechanism for casting ballots in Oregon in 1998 by a citizen’s initiative, Measure 60, which voters overwhelmingly approved by a 70 percent margin. 

A little more than 1 million eligible voters voted on Measure 60.  

The history of Oregon’s vote-by-mail system, however, goes back in time much further than 1998, according to a document on the Oregon Secretary of State’s website detailing the program’s history. 

In 1981, Oregon approved a vote-by-mail (VBM) test for local elections. The program was deemed a success . . .

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