Process to replace Kruse will be quick

Officials have 30 days after vacancy to pick a replacement.

Posted: Feb. 9, 2018 12:17 AM
Updated: Feb. 9, 2018 9:06 AM

ROSEBURG, Ore. -- The process to replace outgoing Sen. Jeff Kruse will be complicated--but also relatively swift.

Douglas County Commissioner Tim Freeman outlined the process in which he'll play a major part.

Freeman, a Republican, says it will start when Secretary of State Dennis Richardson declares a vacancy in senate District 1 which includes parts of five counties: Douglas, Coos, Curry, Josephine, and Jackson.

Republican party officials from every precinct in the district (known as committeemen and committeewomen) will come together and nominate a slate of 3-5 candidates.

After that, commissioners from the five counties will cast their individual votes for one of the candidates. The commissioners' votes are weighted based on the number of District 1 voters in their respective counties. For example, Freeman says, if 45 percent of Douglas County is in District 1, then the three Douglas County commissioners would each get about 1/7th of a vote.

"The secretary of state does all the math," Freeman said.

The process must be completed within 30 days, Freeman said.

Whoever is picked will serve until the next election, unless a special election is held first. That determination will be made by the secretary of state based on the election calendar and the appropriate laws, Freeman said.

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