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Oregon odds strongly favor Democrats

Your guide to the 2024 elections

Oregon State Capitol building in Salem, Ore. KingWu/E+ via Getty Images

Oregon odds strongly favor Democrats


Voter makeup:

Oregon has 3,039,926 registered voters as of May, up slightly from 2022. With 32 percent registered as Democrats and 23 percent as Republicans, Oregon is a reliable Democratic stronghold, with some exceptions. For the first time, non-affiliated voters are the largest group in the state at 1,111,398 registrants, slightly edging out Democrats. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the voters are nonpartisan. Oregon automatically registers people to vote when they get their driver’s license or ID card. If registrants don’t specify a party affiliation within 21 days, they’re marked as unaffiliated. Most of them vote Democratic, according to the secretary of state.


Oregon does not allow same-day registration. Voters can vote by mail, but their ballot must be postmarked by Election Day. Oregon primaries are closed, meaning unaffiliated voters can’t vote for partisan positions in the primaries. Unaffiliated voters can vote for nonpartisan local offices.


On May 21, President Joe Biden won the Democratic primary with more than 88 percent of the vote. Marianne Williamson and other write-in candidates received the rest. Former President Donald Trump won roughly 92 percent of the vote, but about 8 percent of GOP voters wrote in another candidate.

Joe Biden won nearly 57 percent of the vote in Oregon’s general election in 2020, with Trump taking about 40 percent. Trump fared similarly in 2016 against Hillary Clinton. Oregon has voted for the Democratic presidential candidate in every election since 1988. Due to a growing population, Oregon will have an eighth electoral vote this year.


Oregon has six seats in the House of Representatives. Three incumbents are Democrats, and two are Republicans. Rep. Earl Blumenauer, a Democrat in the 3rd District, announced he will not run for reelection.

  • Republican Lori Chavez-DeRemer, 56, flipped the 5th District in 2022, an area Biden won by 9 points in 2020. The surprise upset makes the district competitive for the first time in more than two decades. Her victory also made her the first Latina and first female Republican member of Congress from Oregon. Chavez-DeRemer has voted to increase border security and combat the spread of fentanyl. She has also taken conflicting stances on abortion over her political career. In 2022, she said she would support a national pro-life law protecting babies past six weeks’ gestation. Then last year she said in interviews that abortion is a state issue and she does not support Republican efforts to block federal funding for it. The Lugar Center named Chavez-DeRemer the most bipartisan member in the 118th Congress. This year she formally endorsed Trump for reelection.

  • Challenger Janelle Bynum won the Democratic primary, largely with the backing of top Democrats like House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. The party stepped in to prop her up rather than the more progressive Jamie McLeod-Skinner, who lost to Chavez-DeRemer in 2022. Bynum has twice defeated Chavez-DeRemer in state legislature races. Bynum, who is originally from Washington, D.C., currently serves in the Oregon state legislature and owns four McDonald’s restaurants in the Portland area. During her four terms in the state legislature, Bynum has focused heavily on criminal justice reforms and lessening offender penalties. If elected, Bynum would become Oregon’s first black representative. She wants to codify Roe v. Wade into law and also promises to expand Medicaid and regulate carbon emissions.

  • In the 4th District, Republicans are looking to flip a seat that Democratic incumbent Rep. Val Hoyle, 60, narrowly won in 2022 with just over 50 percent of the vote. Hoyle ran unopposed in the Democratic primary.

  • Republican Monique DeSpain, 60, is an Air Force veteran with no prior political experience. She received endorsements in the 4th District primary from Speaker of the House Mike Johnson and House Majority Leader Steve Scalise. DeSpain says she’ll improve border security by voting to erect physical barriers and aggressively target drug cartels. She also promises to improve housing costs through deregulation and to back aid Israel.


Oregonians have only elected a Republican as secretary of state once since 1985. Democrats hold every statewide elected office, but Republicans hope for another flip this year. Current Secretary of State LaVonne Griffin-Valade was appointed to the position last year to finish the term of the Shemia Fagan, who resigned last year after a local news outlet reported she took a side job with a marijuana company while her office was auditing the industry. Over the past decade, every secretary of state has left office before the end of his or her term due to health issues or scandals, leading to low voter confidence in the office.

  • State Treasurer Tobias Read, 48, easily won the Democratic primary on May 21. He argued that his experience and methodical leadership would help stabilize the office. If elected, he promised to make decisions based on data, not partisan politics. He was formerly a state representative and ran an unsuccessful campaign for governor in 2022.

  • State Sen. Dennis Linthicum, 68, beat out three opponents in the Republican primary. He was barred from reelection to the state legislature because he participated in a Republican-led six-week walkout from the state Senate in 2023 to protest Democratic bills. According to state law, any legislator with 10 unexcused absences in a single session may not run for reelection. Linthicum signed a national letter in 2021 to call for an audit of the 2020 presidential election, claiming that fraud affected the results. If elected, he says he would regulate candidate funding, cut down on spending, and overhaul office information software that he says censors conservative content.


Five of Oregon’s seven Supreme Court justices are up for election this year. The justices serve six-year terms and must be members of the Oregon State Bar and have lived in the state for at least three years. In Oregon, governors appoint justices in the event of a vacancy. They are selected in nonpartisan elections

  • All five justices are running unopposed, and all were appointed by Democratic Gov. Kate Brown. The composition of the court is unlikely to change.

  • Oregon voters will also find appellate justices on a nonpartisan ballot this year. Five judges are running for reelection after their terms expired.


  • Oregon’s constitution doesn’t allow the legislature to impeach elected representatives. The legislature proposed an amendment that would allow impeachments, which is on the ballot for voters as the Impeachment of Elected State Executives Amendment.

  • Voters will also decide on an amendment that would establish ranked-choice voting, or RCV, when electing nonlegislative federal and state offices. Rather than the two candidates with the most votes moving on to the general election, known as plurality voting, RCV allows voters to rank candidates in order of preference. Candidates with the lowest number of votes are then eliminated, but a voter’s second or third preference can help put a candidate through to the next ballot.

  • Another amendment would establish a Public Service Compensation Commission for determining the salaries of officials including the governor, Supreme Court justices, secretary of state, and more.

Dig deeper:

  • Read reports from Liz Lykins about an Oregon judge denying a Christian mother’s right to adopt for the sake of gender ideology and Oregon’s Department of Education removing grants from a Christian youth organization.

  • Listen to Mary Muncy’s story on recriminalizing drugs in Oregon.

Visit the WORLD Election Center 2024 to follow our state-by-state coverage between now and November.

Clara York

Clara is a 2023 World Journalism Institute graduate and a senior journalism major at Patrick Henry College.

Carolina Lumetta

Carolina is a WORLD reporter and a graduate of the World Journalism Institute and Wheaton College. She resides in Washington, D.C.


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