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Oregon to spare 60,000 voters from inactive status

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SALEM, Ore. (AP) -- Secretary of State Dennis Richardson says registered Oregon voters shouldn't be blocked out of the election process just because their failure to vote for five years got them flagged as inactive.

So he's doubling that timeline to 10 years, immediately affecting about 60,000 Oregonians who would otherwise no longer receive a ballot in the mail because of their inactive status.

Richardson is Oregon's first Republican secretary of state in more than 30 years and first Republican to hold a statewide elected office in 14 years. He disclosed his plans to double the inactive-voter timeline during his first news conference Tuesday at the state capitol in Salem.

He says it'll be especially helpful to registered voters who have temporarily left the state for school or to join the military.

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