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Learn Which Secretaries of State Are On the Ballot in 2018

Learn which Secretaries of State posts are on the ballot, directly or indirectly, in 2018.

 

The Secretary of State holds a crucial executive position in 47 of the 50 states. (Hawaii, Alaska, and Utah do not have a secretary of state.) Duties vary, but he or she often serves as the state’s chief election official, overseeing elections and voter rolls.

 

If your state told Kris Kobach and his Trumpian voter commission panel to get stuffed in 2017 when it came calling for sensitive electoral information, it was probably your secretary of state who sent him packing. (If your secretary of state didn’t tell Kobach to get stuffed and go away, you should think seriously about voting that person out.)

 

A fair number of states elect the secretary of state directly. Others allow their governors to appoint him or her, and still others let their state legislatures choose.

 

According to Ballotpedia, 26 of the direct-election states will list the secretary of state on their ballots in 2018. A total of six of the nine states that let their governors pick are electing governors this year, and the three states that let their legislatures pick will have legislative elections in 2018.

 

The secretary of state is one element of a triplex–a situation created when the governor, the attorney general, and the secretary of state belong to the same political party. A triplex doesn’t carry the same implications as a trifecta, but it does make it easier for a party to push its agenda, which can be worrisome enough.

 

Below are notes on secretaries of state who are up for re-election, whether they belong to a triplex, and whether any Democrats will run in the primary.

 

 

Alabama: As of January 1, 2018, Republican incumbent John Merrill had not yet decided whether to run for a second term. Alabama has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have yet committed to the June 5 primary.

 

Arizona: As of January 1, 2018, Republican incumbent Michele Reagan had not yet decided whether to run for a second term. Arizona has a Republican triplex.

At least two Democrats will run in the August 28 primary.

 

Arkansas: Republican incumbent Mark Martin is term-limited out. Arkansas has a Republican triplex.

At least two Democrats will run in the May 22 primary.

 

California: As of January 1, 2018, Democratic incumbent Alex Padilla had not yet decided to run for a second term. California has a Democratic triplex.

California uses a Top-two primary system, which sends the top two vote-getters to the general election. Four other candidates, including one Democrat, have committed to the June 5 primary.

 

Colorado: Republican incumbent Wayne W. Williams will run for a second term.

At least four Democrats will run in the June 26 primary.

 

Connecticut: Democratic incumbent Denise Merrill will run for a third term. Connecticut has a Democratic triplex.

No other Democrats have signed on for the August 14 primary.

 

Georgia: Republican incumbent Brian Kemp will run for governor instead of a third term as secretary of state. Georgia has a Republican triplex.

At least three Democrats will appear in the May 22 primary.

 

Idaho: Republican incumbent Lawerence Denney will run for a second term. Idaho has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have yet committed to the May 15 primary.

 

Illinois: Democratic incumbent Jesse White will run for a sixth term.

One other Democrat will meet White in the March 20 primary.

 

Indiana: Republican incumbent Connie Lawson will run for her second full term as secretary of state (she was appointed in 2012). Indiana has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have yet committed to the May 8 primary.

 

Iowa: As of January 1, 2018, Republican incumbent Paul Pate had not yet decided whether to run for a second term.

At least two Democrats will run in the June 5 primary.

 

Kansas: Republican incumbent Kris Kobach, who is not a nice person at all, will run for governor instead of a third term as secretary of state. Kansas has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Lucy Steyer, will appear in the August 7 primary.

 

Massachusetts: Democratic incumbent William Galvin will run for a seventh term.

He will meet at least one other Democrat, Josh Zakim, in the September 18 primary.

 

Michigan: Republican incumbent Ruth Johnson is term-limited out. Michigan has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Jocelyn Benson, will run in the August 7 primary.

 

Minnesota: As of January 1, 2018, Democratic incumbent Steve Simon had not yet decided to run for a second term. Minnesota has a Democratic triplex.

No Democrats have yet committed to the August 14 primary.

 

Nebraska: Republican incumbent John A. Gale decided against running for a fifth term. Nebraska has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have yet committed to the May 15 primary.

 

Nevada: Republican incumbent Barbara Cegavske will run for a second term. Nevada has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, state Rep. Nelson Araujo, will run in the June 12 primary.

 

New Mexico: Democratic incumbent Maggie Toulouse Oliver will run for her first full term after being elected in November 2016.

No other Democrats have yet committed to the June 5 primary.

 

North Dakota: As of January 1, 2018, Republican incumbent Al Jaeger had not yet decided whether to run for an eighth term. North Dakota has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have yet committed to the June 12 primary.

 

Ohio: Republican incumbent Jon Husted is term-limited out. Ohio has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, state Rep. Kathleen Clyde, will run in the May 8 primary.

 

Rhode Island: As of January 1, 2018, Democratic incumbent Nellie Gorbea had not yet decided to run for a second term. Rhode Island has a Democratic triplex.

No other Democrats have yet committed to the September 12 primary.

 

South Carolina: Republican incumbent Mark Hammond will run for a fifth term. South Carolina has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have yet committed to the June 12 primary.

 

South Dakota: Republican incumbent Shantel Krebs will run for a U.S. House of Representatives seat instead of a second term as secretary of state. South Dakota has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have yet committed to the June 5 primary.

 

Vermont: As of January 1, 2018, Democratic incumbent Jim Condos had not yet decided to run for a fifth two-year term as secretary of state.

No Democratic would-be challengers have yet committed to the August 14 primary.

 

Wisconsin: As of January 1, 2018, Democratic incumbent Douglas La Follette had not yet decided to run for an eighth consecutive term as secretary of state (he also held the office from 1975 to 1979 before starting the current streak of service in 1983).

No other Democrats have yet committed to the August 14 primary.

 

Wyoming: As of January 1, 2018, Republican incumbent Ed Murray had not yet decided whether to run for a second term.

No Democrats have signed up for the August 21 primary.

 

 

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We at OTYCD relied on raw info from Ballotpedia to build this post. See the Secretary of State 2018 races page here:

https://ballotpedia.org/Secretary_of_State_elections,_2018

 

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