Oregon authorities investigating alleged deceptive tactics in sanctuary law repeal effort: report

Oregon authorities investigating alleged deceptive tactics in sanctuary law repeal effort: report

Law enforcement officials in Oregon are investigating whether signature-gatherers deceived voters into signing a petition in support of repealing the state's decades-old "sanctuary" law.

According to The Associated Press, the Oregon secretary of state's office confirmed that it had received nine complaints about deceptive practices by the signature-gatherers. 

Those complaints were forwarded to the state's Justice Department for investigation, the AP reported. State elections staff told the AP that an estimated 40 people called to ask that their names be removed from the petition. 

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The petition in question was the work of a conservative group called the Repeal Oregon Sanctuary Law Committee, which is pushing a measure to do away with the state's 31-year-old sanctuary law.

That law — the first of its kind — limits coordination between police and federal immigration officials.

Opponents of the proposal have also filed another complaint about whether the deceptive tactics were part of a coordinated effort to deceive and misinform voters, the AP reported.

Lee Vasche, who owns the signature-gathering company working on the petition, told the AP that most of the complaints about deceptive tactics were the fault of one signature-gatherer.

He said that the company dismissed two signature-gatherers and destroyed about 400 signatures. 

"We owned up to that, destroyed them, and moved on," he said.

Vasche told the AP that the company stopped collecting signatures for the petition in early March because of opposition to the repeal proposal in metropolitan areas, as well as a boycott against the firm.