Democrats and Republicans are preparing to pour millions of dollars into races for Secretary of State up for election in half the states next year amid a new recognition that those who oversee the electoral process can play pivotal roles in deciding an election’s outcome.
The focus follows former President Donald Trump’s pressure campaign on state leaders to overturn the results of last year’s election, and as Republican-controlled state legislatures advance and pass electoral reform bills that would limit access to absentee ballots, drop-boxes and other avenues to voting.
“These offices used to be kind of sleepy offices, they were personality contests and the people who ran for them were paper-pushers,” said Michael Adams (R), Kentucky’s Secretary of State and the vice chair of the Republican Secretaries of State Committee, a group that will back GOP candidates. “We’re going to be uniquely a focus in a way that we never have been before. Our side is going to be prepared for that.”