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Secretaries of state can’t single-handedly change an election’s results, but they can undermine and disrupt the process and the system in undemocratic ways.

Knowing your secretaries of state can help you better understand your state’s election procedures and make you a more informed voter. 

And keeping up with your secretary of state’s policy actions, especially election-related ones, can help ensure accountability. 

The secretary of state is an official in the state governments of 47 of the 50 states of the United States.

In three states, there is no secretary of state, so the lieutenant governors perform those duties: Alaska (Republican, Kevin Meyer), Hawaii (Democrat, Sylvia Luke), and Utah (Republican, Deidre Henderson).

Of the 50 current Secretaries of State, or Lt. Governors, 28 are Republican, and 22 are Democrats.

In 35 states, the secretary of state is elected by the people and serves a four-year term, except for Vermont, which serves a two-year term.

In the other 12 states, the secretary of state is appointed by either the governor or the state legislature. Maine and New Hampshire General Courts select their secretaries of state for two-year terms.

Below is a state-by-state breakdown of secretaries of state by voter elected or governor/legislator appointed, political party, state, and reelection year where applicable:

DEMOCRATS UP FOR REELECTION IN 2024

North Carolina (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2024

Elaine Marshall: Won by 51.2%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Oregon (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2024

Shemia Fagan: Won by 50.3%

Four-year term

Term limit: Eight years in a 12-year period

Vermont (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2024

Sarah Copeland Hanzas: Won by 64.9%

Two-year term

Term limit: None

Washington (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2024

Steve Hobbs: Won by 49.8%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

DEMOCRATS UP FOR REELECTION IN 2026

Arizona (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Adrian Fontes: Won by 52.8%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Consecutive Terms

California (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026 (Can’t run due to term limits)

Shirley Weber: Won by 57.7%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Terms

Colorado (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026 (Can’t run due to term limits)

Jena Griswold: Won by 53.6%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Consecutive Terms

Connecticut: (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Stephanie Thomas: Won by 54.9%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Illinois (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Alexi Giannoulias: Won by 53.8%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Massachusetts (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

William Galvin: Won by 67.5%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Michigan (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026 (Can’t run due to term limits)

Jocelyn Benson: Won by 50.8%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Terms

Minnesota (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Steve Simon: Won by 54.5%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Nevada: (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Cisco Aguilar: Won by 48.9%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Terms

New Mexico: (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Maggie Toulouse Oliver: Won by 54.5%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Consecutive Terms

Rhode Island (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Gregg Amore: won by 59.4%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Consecutive Terms

Wisconsin (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Douglas La Follette: Won by 48.3%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

REPUBLICANS UP FOR REELECTION IN 2023

Kentucky (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2023

Michael Adams: Won by 52.3%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Consecutive Terms

Louisiana (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2023

Kyle Ardoin: Won by 59.1%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Mississippi (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2023

Michael D. Watson, Jr: Won by 58.8%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

REPUBLICANS UP FOR REELECTION IN 2024

Missouri (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2024

Jay Ashcroft: Won by 60.5%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Montana (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2024

Christi Jacobsen: Won by 59.6%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two terms in a 16-year period

West Virginia (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2024

Mac Warner: Won by 58.3%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

REPUBLICANS UP FOR REELECTION IN 2026

Alabama (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026  

Wes Allen: Won by 66.3%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Consecutive Terms

Arkansas (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026 (Can’t run due to term limits)

John Thurston: Won by 67.2%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Terms

Georgia (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Brad Raffensperger: Won by 53.3%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Idaho (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Phil McGrane: Won by 72.4%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Indiana (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Diego Morales: Won by 57.4%

Four-year term

Term limit: Eight out of twelve years

Iowa (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Paul Pate: Won by 60.4%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Kansas (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Scott Schwab: Won by 58.8%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Nebraska (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Bob Evnen: Won by 100%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

North Dakota (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Michael Howe: Won by 63.2%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

Ohio (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026 (Can’t run due to term limits)

Frank LaRose: Won by 59.6%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Consecutive Terms

South Carolina (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Mark Hammond: Won by 63.3%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

South Dakota (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Monae Johnson: Won by 64.5%

Four-year term

Term limit: Two Consecutive Terms

Wyoming (Voter Elected): Up for reelection in 2026

Chuck Gray: Won by 91.6%

Four-year term

Term limit: None

DEMOCRAT SECRETARIES OF STATE APPOINTED BY THE GOVERNOR OR STATE LEGISLATURE

Delaware (Governor Elected)

Jeffrey W. Bullock: Assumed Office on 1/21/09

Length of Term: Serves at the pleasure of the Governor

Term limit: None

Maine (Legislator Elected)

Shenna Bellows: Assumed Office on 1/4/21

Length of Term: Two Years

Term limit: Four Consecutive Terms

New Jersey (Governor Elected)

Tahesha Way: Assumed Office on 6/1/18

Length of Term: Serves a term coterminous with the Governor

Term limit: None

New York (Governor Elected)

Robert Rodriguez: Assumed Office on 12/20/21

Length of Term: Until the end of the term of the governor by whom s/he was appointed and until his or her successor is appointed and has qualified

Term limit: None

Pennsylvania (Governor Elected)

Leigh Chapman: Assumed Office on 1/8/22

Length of Term: Serves at the pleasure of the Governor

Term limit: None

REPUBLICAN SECRETARIES OF STATE APPOINTED BY THE GOVERNOR OR STATE LEGISLATURE

Florida (Governor Elected)

Cord Byrd: Assumed Office on 5/17/22

Length of Term: Serves at the pleasure of the Governor

Term limit: None

Maryland (Governor Elected)

John C. Wobensmith: Assumed Office on 1/21/15

Length of Term: Serves at the pleasure of the Governor

Term limit: None

New Hampshire (Legislator Elected)

David Scanlan: Assumed Office on 1/10/22

Length of Term: Two Years

Term limit: None

Oklahoma (Governor Elected)

Brian Bingman: Assumed Office on 2020

Length of Term: Four Years

Term limit: None

Tennessee (Legislator Elected)

Tre Hargett: Assumed Office on 1/15/09

Length of Term: Four Years

Term limit: None

Texas (Governor Elected)

John Scott: Assumed Office on 10/21/21

Length of Term: Serves concurrent with the appointing Governor

Term limit: None

Virginia (Governor Elected)

Kay Coles James: Assumed Office on 1/24/22

Length of Term: Four years

Term limit: None

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