Current voter registration
- 2,113,668 (as of September 2008)
- Registered Democrat: 914,542
- Registered Republican: 686,656
- Other parties/ Unaffiliated: 512,470
The 2008 Candidates
- Incumbent: Gordon Smith (Republican) won his party's primary with 85.4 percent of vote.
- Challengers: Jeff Merkley (Democrat) won his party's primary with 44.8 percent of vote.
- Dave Brownlow (Constitution)
Other items on this year's ballot: U.S. president, U.S. House of Representatives (five seats), Oregon state Senate and House of Representatives, secretary of state, attorney general, treasurer, commissioner of the Bureau of Labor and Industries, state Supreme Court, circuit court, and appeals court judgeships, and county and city offices. There are also 12 statewide ballot initiatives, including proposals that would change requirements for redistricting, tax deductions, English-only teaching, and mandatory prison sentences for certain types of crimes.
Fundraising and Spending
(as of Oct. 15, 2008)
- Contributions and Loans: $0
- Spent: $0
- Cash on Hand: $0
- Contributions and Loans: $10,771,100
- Spent: $10,646,160
- Cash on Hand: $125,060
- Contributions and Loans: $8,301,993
- Spent: $9,680,255
- Cash on Hand: $815,044
Oregon Demographics (as of 2007)
- Total Population: 3,747,455
- % Male: 49.6%
- % Female: 50.4%
- Median Age: 37.9
- White 3,332,626 88.9%
- African American 88,253 2.4%
- American Indian and Alaska Native 124,154 3.3%
- Asian 170,048 4.5%
- Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 15,533 0.4%
- Some Other Race 147,351 3.9%
- Two or More Races 123,958 3.3%
- Hispanic/ Latino (of any race) 396,145 10.6%
*Total may not add up to 100 percent because of Census tracking methods.
2002 Senate Election
- Gordon Smith (R): 712,287 55.1%
- Bill Bradbury (D): 501,898 38.8%
- Dan Fitzgerald (L): 29,979 2.3%
- Lon Mabon (C): 21,703 1.7%
- Write-In 1,354 —
- Total votes: 1,293,756, an estimated 69.09 percent turnout.
3 Things You Didn't Know About the Oregon Senate Race
1. Oregon voters will not need to go to the polls this Election Day—a 1998 ballot measure made the state the first in the nation to vote by mail. Past elections have shown that many Oregonians like to wait until the last days to mail or drop off their ballots, but as of October 30, 43 percent of registered voters had already returned their ballots.
2. Oregon's incumbent senator, Republican Gordon Smith, is a member of a legendary political family, the Udalls. He's related to the late former presidential candidate Mo Udall, and his second cousins, Democrats Mark and Tom Udall, are also running for the Senate this year in Colorado and New Mexico.
3. The 2008 Senate race has been the most expensive political campaign ever run in Oregon. Estimates show that more than $40 million has been spent by the state and national parties.
Associated Press, The Oregonian