Phil Keisling

Phil Keisling is the Director of the Center for Public Service of the Hatfield School of Government at Portland State University. He served as Secretary of State for Oregon from 1991 to 1999, and also served in the Oregon House of Representatives. He was an investigative reporter for the Willamette Week from 1978 to 1982 and an editor at the Washington Monthly from 1982 to 1984.


The Most Effective Voter Suppression Strategy: Requiring Polling Places

As a former Oregon Secretary of State (and chief elections official), I’m glad the courts have invalidated or postponed various voter suppression laws cynically cloaked as “election fraud prevention.” Yet in winning these hard-fought battles, voting rights advocates are losing the much larger war – and most don’t even realize it. In 48 states, there’s… Read more »

The Tax Debate We Want and Need

President Obama has now given the Congressional “super committee” his plan for “Economic Growth and Deficit Reduction” that would trim $3 trillion from projected deficits over the next decade. But whether one believes the plan is “fair and balanced,” a modern version of a “Class Warfare Manifesto – or something else entirely- let’s get real…. Read more »

Election Fraud, American Style

In July 2003, Aviel Rubin, an untenured Johns Hopkins computer-science professor, was asked to analyze some software source code purportedly used in the Accuvote TSx voting machine, manufactured by Diebold. The Ohio-based company is one of several major vendors of Direct Recording Electronic (DRE) voting machines that almost 30 million voters, in almost 40 states,… Read more »

Early and Often

With the average seventh-grader at least familiar with the term “pregnant chads,” election reform is no longer the province of secretaries of state or the occasional academic conference. The issues of how voters are qualified, and how ballots are cast and counted, have received far more public scrutiny in the past half-decade than they did… Read more »