The Democratic Association of Secretaries of State is the only organization dedicated to electing and protecting Democratic Secretaries of States.
Secretaries of State were center stage during the 2020 election, from ensuring that all votes were counted properly to providing administrative support for fair and accessible voting. Since then, extremists have spread lies about the results in an attempt to undermine our election system and change the rules to their advantage. Over 500 bills have been introduced in state legislatures that restrict the right to vote, and now, these Big Lie advocates are running to oversee elections themselves. By changing the rules and changing the players, they hope to change the outcomes of future elections. Democratic Secretaries of State are pushing back, serving as the last line of defense to protect our democracy and preserve the will of the voters.
DASS is fighting to protect our Democratic Secretaries as hard as they fight to protect our democracy.
What is a Secretary of State?
The Secretary of State, in most states, serves as the Chief Elections Officer and is responsible for voter registration, expanding voting access administratively, maintaining voter rolls, and administering elections. In 2020, Democratic Secretaries of State across the country expanded voting access, including safe, in-person voting and expanded access to absentee ballot applications, and improved election security — all while Republican-led legislatures refused to act and instead sought to conduct partisan, fraudulent ballot reviews to overturn the will of the people.
Secretaries of State also have various other responsibilities based on their state, including administering business services and licensing, regulating securities and charities, and issuing professional licenses; in some states, they are second in succession to the Governor.
At a time when voter suppression and voter purges are running rampant through Republican-controlled legislatures, Democratic Secretaries of State are uniquely positioned to act as a firewall to safeguard voting rights.
How Are Secretaries Chosen?
The Secretary of State is directly elected in 35 states and Washington, D.C. The Secretary is elected by the state Legislature in 3 states and appointed by the governor in 9 states. Alaska, Hawaii, and Utah do not have Secretaries of State.