Other Group

People Not Politicians Oregon

Website:

www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/

Location:

Portland, OR

Chair:

Norman Turrill

People Not Politicians Oregon (PNP Oregon) is the Oregon affiliate of People Not Politicians (PNP), a national redistricting project organized by Let’s Fix This and the League of Women Voters of Oklahoma, two left-of-center advocacy organizations. [1] Though the initiative began in Oklahoma in October of 2019, it has since expanded to various additional states, supporting referenda to create independent redistricting committee to prevent gerrymandering. [2]

In 2019, PNP Oregon launched Initiative Petition 57, an Oregon ballot initiative to create an independent redistricting commission that would draw new legislative district lines in Oregon following the 2020 Census. [3] Petition 57, if passed, would create an independent commission of 12 Oregon residents split evenly between Democrats, Republicans, and third-parties, who would create legislative districts under a strict set of criteria. [4]

PNP Oregon failed to reach the number of petition signatures required to qualify for the ballot by the filing deadline, prompting the group to sue the Oregon Secretary of State for refusing to reduce the required number of signatures in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. [5] [6] Though United States District Court Judge Michael McShane initially ruled in favor of PNP Oregon, Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum (D) appealed McShane’s decision to the Supreme Court, who stayed the decision pending the ruling of the Ninth Circuit Court. [7] On September 22, 2020, the circuit court remanded the case to the federal district court to determine if McShane’s original order was no longer relevant given rapidly approaching election deadlines, effectively ending PNP Oregon’s 2020 campaign for Petition 57. [8]

PNP Oregon’s efforts were led by Norman Turrill, who has a history of left-of-center organizing with Common Cause and the League of Women Voters (LWV). [9]

2020 Ballot Initiative

In 2020, PNP Oregon developed Initiative Petition 57, a ballot initiative to create an independent redistricting committee to draw new legislative district lines in Oregon following the 2020 Census. [10] Petition 57, if passed, would create an independent commission of 12 Oregon residents, including four Democrats, four Republicans, and four third-party or unaffiliated members. [11] Any Oregon resident would be eligible to apply to the commission, provided he or she is not a public official or lobbyist. [12] Petition 57 also includes provisions that mandates that the commission represent the “diversity” of the state. [13]

Aside from creating the commission, Petition 57 sets strict rules for commission operations. Petition 57 requires that the commission hold at least 10 public hearings across the state before voting, sets criteria to prevent “splitting communities” in redistricting, and requires a multi-partisan vote to adopt the map. [14]

PNP Oregon filed the ballot measures on November 12 and 13, 2019. [15] A number of national left-of-center organizations promoted the initiative, including Common Cause, Stand Up America, and the Oregon chapter of the League of Women Voters (LWV). [16] Many left-of-center organizations based in Oregon, also supported Petition 57 including Portland Forward, the Oregon Progressive Party, and the Eugene/Springfield branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). [17]

Traditionally, the state of Oregon requires 149,360 validated signatures on an initiative petition by July 2 in order to qualify for the November ballot in a given year. [18] On June 30, PNP Oregon turned in fewer than 60,000 signatures, despite spending over $500,000 in an attempt to rally support. [19]

That same day, PNP Oregon submitted a lawsuit against Oregon Secretary of State Beverly Clarno (R) for refusing to reduce the signature requirement to account for the “impossibility” of collecting signatures during the COVID-19 pandemic. [20] [21] The lawsuit, which also listed the League of Women Voters of Oregon, Common Cause, and the NAACP of Eugene and Springfield as plaintiffs, alleged that Clarno’s refusal to lower the requirement unconstitutionally interfered with the people of Oregon’s First Amendment right to petition. [22] [23] Clarno opposed the lawsuit, demonstrating that two other committees had been able to submit the required number of signatures, despite the pandemic. [24]

Ignoring Clarno’s opposition, United States District Judge Michael McShane ruled in favor of PNP Oregon and ordered Clarno to either accept the signatures or give PNP Oregon until August 17 to turn in 58,789 validated signatures. [25] Clarno chose the second option, but Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum (D) appealed McShane’s decision to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and requested that PNP Oregon be prohibited from gathering signatures while the court considered the appeal. [26] The Ninth Circuit Court declined the request to block signature collection, and PNP Oregon submitted the requisite number of signatures on July 30. [27]

Attorney General Rosenblum then brought to the Supreme Court, which granted Rosenblum’s request and stayed McShane’s prior decision pending the result of the Ninth Circuit’s ruling on the appeal. [28] [29] On September 22, 2020, the Ninth Circuit Court remanded the case to the federal district court to determine if McShane’s original order had become moot given the upcoming election deadlines, effectively ending PNP Oregon’s 2020 campaign for Petition 57, despite the group’s promise to work up until the election. [30]

Leadership

Norman Turrill is the chair of PNP Oregon and the chief petitioner for Petition 57. [31] Turrill has a long history of left-of-center political organizing, beginning as a volunteer with the Peace Corps in Africa and as a noted antiwar activist. [32] After his time in the Peace Corps, Turrill joined the Oregon state board of Common Cause, a left-of-center political organizing group. [33] Turrill also has a history of left-of-center advocacy with the League of Women Voters (LWV), sitting as the only man ever on the LWV national board as chair of technology. [34] Turrill oversaw the creation of the LWV website and developed LWV’s social media team to expand League membership. [35]

Andy Moore is the executive director for PNP on the national level. [36] Moore is involved in the left-of-center organizing network, also working as founder and executive director of Let’s Fix This, a Oklahoma group which promotes citizen engagement in politics. [37] Moore is also the executive director of Freedom of Information Oklahoma, a government watchdog group. [38] [39]

References

  1. Moore, Andy. “This Is How We Fix This,” October 28, 2019. https://www.letsfixthisok.org/blog/2019/10/28/this-is-how-we-fix-this?rq=people+not+politicians.   ^
  2. Moore, Andy. “This Is How We Fix This,” October 28, 2019. https://www.letsfixthisok.org/blog/2019/10/28/this-is-how-we-fix-this?rq=people+not+politicians.   ^
  3. “Our Proposal.” People Not Politicians, June 9, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/our-proposal/.   ^
  4. “Our Proposal.” People Not Politicians, June 9, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/our-proposal/.   ^
  5. Jaquiss, Nigel. “Federal Appeals Court Denies State’s Motion to Halt Signature Gathering for Redistricting Measure.” Willamette Week, July 23, 2020. https://www.wweek.com/news/2020/07/23/federal-court-rejects-states-appeal-on-redistricting-measure-ip-57-proponents-can-proceed-with-lower-requirements/. ^
  6. Wells, Porter. “Redistricting Groups Sue Oregon Over Ballot Initiative Rules (1).” Bloomberg Law, July 1, 2020. https://news.bloomberglaw.com/coronavirus/oregon-redistricting-reformers-sue-over-ballot-initiative-rules. ^
  7. Jaquiss, Nigel. “Federal Appeals Court Denies State’s Motion to Halt Signature Gathering for Redistricting Measure.” Willamette Week, July 23, 2020. https://www.wweek.com/news/2020/07/23/federal-court-rejects-states-appeal-on-redistricting-measure-ip-57-proponents-can-proceed-with-lower-requirements/. ^
  8. Turrill, Norman. “People Not Politicians Responds to Ruling by Ninth Circuit Court.” People Not Politicians, September 3, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/press-release/people-not-politicians-responds-to-ruling-by-ninth-circuit-court/. ^
  9. “Norman Turrill.” The Oregon Social Justice Documentation Project. Oregon State University. Accessed September 23, 2020. http://blogs.oregonstate.edu/oregonsocialjustice/norman-turrill/. ^
  10. “Our Proposal.” People Not Politicians, June 9, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/our-proposal/. ^
  11. “Our Proposal.” People Not Politicians, June 9, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/our-proposal/. ^
  12. “Our Proposal.” People Not Politicians, June 9, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/our-proposal/. ^
  13. “Our Proposal.” People Not Politicians, June 9, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/our-proposal/. ^
  14. “Our Proposal.” People Not Politicians, June 9, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/our-proposal/. ^
  15. “Timeline.” People Not Politicians, May 9, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/our-proposal/timeline/. ^
  16. “Endorsements.” People Not Politicians, June 4, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/endorsements/. ^
  17. “Endorsements.” People Not Politicians, June 4, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/endorsements/. ^
  18. Jaquiss, Nigel. “Federal Appeals Court Denies State’s Motion to Halt Signature Gathering for Redistricting Measure.” Willamette Week, July 23, 2020. https://www.wweek.com/news/2020/07/23/federal-court-rejects-states-appeal-on-redistricting-measure-ip-57-proponents-can-proceed-with-lower-requirements/. ^
  19. Jaquiss, Nigel. “Federal Appeals Court Denies State’s Motion to Halt Signature Gathering for Redistricting Measure.” Willamette Week, July 23, 2020. https://www.wweek.com/news/2020/07/23/federal-court-rejects-states-appeal-on-redistricting-measure-ip-57-proponents-can-proceed-with-lower-requirements/. ^
  20. Jaquiss, Nigel. “Federal Appeals Court Denies State’s Motion to Halt Signature Gathering for Redistricting Measure.” Willamette Week, July 23, 2020. https://www.wweek.com/news/2020/07/23/federal-court-rejects-states-appeal-on-redistricting-measure-ip-57-proponents-can-proceed-with-lower-requirements/. ^
  21. Wells, Porter. “Redistricting Groups Sue Oregon Over Ballot Initiative Rules (1).” Bloomberg Law, July 1, 2020. https://news.bloomberglaw.com/coronavirus/oregon-redistricting-reformers-sue-over-ballot-initiative-rules. ^
  22. “People Not Politicians Oregon v. Clarno.” Common Cause. Accessed September 23, 2020. https://www.commoncause.org/redistricting-litigation/people-not-politicians-oregon-v-clarno/. ^
  23. Wells, Porter. “Redistricting Groups Sue Oregon Over Ballot Initiative Rules (1).” Bloomberg Law, July 1, 2020. https://news.bloomberglaw.com/coronavirus/oregon-redistricting-reformers-sue-over-ballot-initiative-rules. ^
  24. Jaquiss, Nigel. “Federal Appeals Court Denies State’s Motion to Halt Signature Gathering for Redistricting Measure.” Willamette Week, July 23, 2020. https://www.wweek.com/news/2020/07/23/federal-court-rejects-states-appeal-on-redistricting-measure-ip-57-proponents-can-proceed-with-lower-requirements/. ^
  25. Jaquiss, Nigel. “Federal Appeals Court Denies State’s Motion to Halt Signature Gathering for Redistricting Measure.” Willamette Week, July 23, 2020. https://www.wweek.com/news/2020/07/23/federal-court-rejects-states-appeal-on-redistricting-measure-ip-57-proponents-can-proceed-with-lower-requirements/. ^
  26. Jaquiss, Nigel. “Federal Appeals Court Denies State’s Motion to Halt Signature Gathering for Redistricting Measure.” Willamette Week, July 23, 2020. https://www.wweek.com/news/2020/07/23/federal-court-rejects-states-appeal-on-redistricting-measure-ip-57-proponents-can-proceed-with-lower-requirements/. ^
  27. “People Not Politicians Take Response to the U.S. Supreme Court.” People Not Politicians, August 4, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/press-release/people-not-politicians-take-response-to-the-u-s-supreme-court/. ^
  28. Jaquiss, Nigel. “Federal Appeals Court Denies State’s Motion to Halt Signature Gathering for Redistricting Measure.” Willamette Week, July 23, 2020. https://www.wweek.com/news/2020/07/23/federal-court-rejects-states-appeal-on-redistricting-measure-ip-57-proponents-can-proceed-with-lower-requirements/. ^
  29. Liptak, Adam. “Supreme Court Won’t Ease Oregon’s Referendum Rules During the Pandemic.” The New York Times. The New York Times, August 11, 2020. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/08/11/us/supreme-court-oregon-gerrymandering.html. ^
  30. Turrill, Norman. “People Not Politicians Responds to Ruling by Ninth Circuit Court.” People Not Politicians, September 3, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/press-release/people-not-politicians-responds-to-ruling-by-ninth-circuit-court/. ^
  31. Turrill, Norman. “People Not Politicians Responds to Ruling by Ninth Circuit Court.” People Not Politicians, September 3, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticiansoregon.com/press-release/people-not-politicians-responds-to-ruling-by-ninth-circuit-court/. ^
  32. “Norman Turrill.” The Oregon Social Justice Documentation Project. Oregon State University. Accessed September 23, 2020. http://blogs.oregonstate.edu/oregonsocialjustice/norman-turrill/. ^
  33. “Norman Turrill.” The Oregon Social Justice Documentation Project. Oregon State University. Accessed September 23, 2020. http://blogs.oregonstate.edu/oregonsocialjustice/norman-turrill/. ^
  34. “Norman Turrill.” The Oregon Social Justice Documentation Project. Oregon State University. Accessed September 23, 2020. http://blogs.oregonstate.edu/oregonsocialjustice/norman-turrill/. ^
  35. “Norman Turrill.” The Oregon Social Justice Documentation Project. Oregon State University. Accessed September 23, 2020. http://blogs.oregonstate.edu/oregonsocialjustice/norman-turrill/. ^
  36. “People Not Politicians: Let’s End Partisan Gerrymandering.” Accessed September 23, 2020. https://www.peoplenotpoliticians.org/post/efforts-to-end-gerrymandering-in-oklahoma-continue-with-updated-initiative-petition. ^
  37. “Our Team.” Let’s Fix This. Accessed September 23, 2020. https://www.letsfixthisok.org/our-team. ^
  38. “Our Team.” Let’s Fix This. Accessed September 23, 2020. https://www.letsfixthisok.org/our-team. ^
  39. “Home.” Freedom of Information Oklahoma. Accessed September 23, 2020. https://www.foioklahoma.org/. ^
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People Not Politicians Oregon


Portland, OR