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Phil Keisling


Phil Keisling is a Senior Fellow at the Center for Public Service at Portland State University's Mark O. Hatfield School of Government. A former director of the Center, he served from 1991 to 1999 as Oregon's secretary of state following a two-year term in the Oregon House of Representatives.

Keisling also is a former journalist who worked for Portland’s Willamette Week and Washington Monthly magazine.

From 2000 to 2009, he was an executive vice president of CorSource Technology Group, a Beaverton, Ore.-based software services company. He is among the founders of several nonprofit organizaions, including the Oregon Progress Forum, the Oregon Public Affairs Network and Smart Grid Oregon.

If states changed where and how we select candidates, turnout would soar and we'd learn a lot more about what voters really think.
Too many states manage them in ways that disenfranchise eligible voters. The fix is simple: Change a postcard.
Once again, abysmal turnout in primary elections underlines the need to re-think the fundamentals of how we hold elections.
Before moving on to the next vote-counting drama, let's reflect on what went right in Virginia and what policymakers and election administrators elsewhere can learn.
Our voting systems are a difficult marriage between ancient and modern tools. Keeping the proper balance is tricky but crucial.
Younger Americans don't much like what's happening in our elections. But they're not turning out to cast their ballots.
Ballot measures in several states would change the rules in dramatic ways. It's a challenge to "politics as usual."
Maricopa County's botched primary brought accusations of voter suppression. What really happened is more complicated -- and even encouraging.
Even in this intense presidential election season, voter turnout has been abysmal. There's a better way to get voters to participate.
State presidential primaries have strayed far from their original purposes. So why must taxpayers pick up the tab?