Rick Dancer's qualifications for this job are very thin by comparisonThe job of Oregon secretary of state is critical for at least three reasons. The secretary of state is next in line to become governor. The job also oversees the elections division and the audits division of state government.

The major candidates for this position are Democratic state Sen. Kate Brown and Republican Rick Dancer, who is a former television anchorman.

Brown brings the most experience to the race. A lawyer, she has served two terms in the Oregon House of Representatives and one in the state Senate, where she's been leader of the minority and majority. After Secretary of State Bill Bradbury's legislative redistricting was invalidated in 2001, Brown developed a plan that became law. That was valuable preparation, because the next secretary of state will face the same task.

Dancer presents an appealing presence. His enthusiasm seems quite genuine. Despite the odds against him in this race, he projects a certain confidence. He has traveled the state extensively and worked hard at campaigning.

But Dancer's resume for this job is much thinner than Brown's.

In any election, Kate Brown would be a compelling candidate. In this election, she is the clear and obvious choice, because of her legislative experience.

We urge a vote for Kate Brown for secretary of state.

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