Shemia Fagan shows her "Vote" tattoo
Secretary of State Shemia Fagan shows her “Vote” tattoo. (Photo by Ron Cooper/Oregon Capital Chronicle)

Tuesday is the last day to register to vote or choose a political party in time to vote in the May primary election. 

Oregon has closed primaries, meaning only registered Democrats or Republicans get to vote in primary elections for most races, including governor, Congress, the U.S. Senate and the Legislature.

The more than 1.2 million voters who aren’t Democrats or Republicans will still receive primary ballots, but they’ll have fewer races. Every voter gets to participate in the nonpartisan primary for the next commissioner of the state Bureau of Labor and Industries and in judicial races, and voters in some counties will have local offices like county commission or district attorney on their ballots.

Oregonians can check to see if they are registered to vote and for which party by going to visit oregonvotes.gov. Entering the name and birthdate will show the party affiliation, address and confirm whether the individual is listed as an active voter. Voters can also update their registration online.

Registering to vote online requires an Oregon driver’s license or state-issued ID card.

Anyone who doesn’t have a state-issued driver’s license or other ID can register with a paper form that can be printed online or picked up in person at their county elections office. 

Unlike other mail, ballots can’t be forwarded. A voter who moved since the last time they voted without updating their address won’t automatically receive a ballot in the mail. Voters in that circumstance can still vote as long as they update their voter registration with a current address by 8 p.m. on Election Day, Tuesday, May 17. 

Elections officials recommend that voters contact their county clerk to update an address after Tuesday, April 26. 


Oregon Capital Chronicle is part of States Newsroom, a network of news bureaus supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Oregon Capital Chronicle maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Les Zaitz for questions: info@oregoncapitalchronicle.com. Follow Oregon Capital Chronicle on Facebook and Twitter.

Julia Shumway, Oregon Capital Chronicle

Julia Shumway has reported on government and politics in Iowa and Nebraska, spent time at the Bend Bulletin and most recently was a legislative reporter for the Arizona Capitol Times in Phoenix. An award-winning journalist, Julia most recently reported on the tangled efforts to audit the presidential results in Arizona.