Oregon Treasurer Re-election
5:16 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

Oregon Treasurer Can't Seek Re-election

Oregon's attorney general issued an opinion this week that said Democrat Ted Wheeler is not eligible to win election to a second four-year term. That's thanks to an unusual sequence of events that landed Wheeler in office in the first place.

Oregon's attorney general issued an opinion this week that said Democrat Ted Wheeler is not eligible to win election to a second four-year term.
Oregon's attorney general issued an opinion this week that said Democrat Ted Wheeler is not eligible to win election to a second four-year term.
Credit Oregon State Treasury

It started when Wheeler's predecessor, Ben Westlund, died in office less than halfway through his term. Wheeler was appointed to replace Westlund. Then Wheeler was elected to a two-year term. And then Wheeler was elected to a four-year term.

The problem from a timing standpoint is that if Wheeler was elected to another four years, he would run afoul of Oregon's term limits law halfway through his term. Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum says that's a no-no. Basically, Wheeler will be out of a job in 2016 despite not having actually served eight years in office.

Wheeler is alone among state treasurers in the Northwest. The top financial officials in Washington and Idaho do not face term limits. In fact, Idaho treasurer Ron Crane is seeking a fifth consecutive term in this November's election.

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