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Oregon election officials won't review Kristof's residency argument until he officially files for governor's race

Brian Bull
Declared gubernatorial candidate, Nick Kristof, in Eugene Oct. 28, 2021

Note: This story has been corrected to indicate that the Kristof campaign did not submit its 15-page legal analysis memo arguing their candidate’s Oregon residency to the Oregon Secretary of State’s Office.  Rather, a campaign representative says the document was made public by Willamette Week but no one from their staff has sent the memo to any elections officials.

The Oregon Secretary of State’s Office can’t resolve a question over a candidate’s residency requirement until that same candidate files his official paperwork. Since discussing his run for Oregon governor, columnist-turned-candidate Nick Kristof has faced questions over whether he meets the requirement that candidates must live in the state for three years to qualify for the ballot.

Earlier this year, Kristof submitted a 15-page document that Willamette Week published, outlining why he believes he counts as an Oregon resident, despite voting in New York last year.

In an email to KLCC, Secretary of State spokesperson Carla Axtman said the Elections Division won’t make a residency determination without a filing. Axtman added they have seen the document pertaining to Kristof's residency argument.

"Just like we’d do for any candidate, the Elections Division may ask for or use additional information from the candidate to determine residency," wrote Axtman.

A Kristof campaign representative says they will file for office in the near future. All 2022 gubernatorial candidates in Oregon have until March 8, 2022 to file.

Meanwhile, the candidate continues to raise money; since mid-October, Kristof has raised more than a million dollars in contributions.

Below is a listing of who’s already filed since September 9.

Screen shot of current Oregon gubernatorial candidates as of Nov. 10, 2021.

Copyright @2021, KLCC.

Brian Bull joined the KLCC News Team in June 2016. In his 25+ years as a public media journalist, he's worked at NPR, Twin Cities Public Television, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Wisconsin Public Radio, and ideastream in Cleveland. His reporting has netted dozens of accolades, including four national Edward R. Murrow Awards (19 regional), the Ohio Associated Press' Best Reporter Award, Best Radio Reporter from the Native American Journalists Association, and the PRNDI/NEFE Award for Excellence in Consumer Finance Reporting.