Secretary of State
|State Executive Offices|
| Governor • Lt. Governor • Secretary of State • Attorney General • Treasurer • Auditor • Superintendent of Schools • Insurance Commissioner • Controller • Agriculture Commissioner • Natural Resources Commissioner • Labor Commissioner • Public Services Commissioner|
|Elections by Year|
|2014 • 2013 • 2012 • 2011 • 2010|
The duties of the position are generally administrative in nature, and no two states have identical responsibilities delegated to the secretary of state. Many are tasked with keeping state records, from registering businesses to recording the official acts of the Governor. The officeholder also often serves as the chief election official in their state, administering state elections and maintaining official election results. The commissioning and regulation of notaries public, keeping of the official state seal, and certification of official documents all typically fall under the purview of the secretary of state.
The chart below is a breakdown of the political parties pertaining to the state executive office of secretary of state. For other state executive offices, click here.
|Secretary of State||19||27||0||1||47|
|Counts current as of May 2013. If you see an error, please email us|
List of Secretaries of State
In 15 states, the office of Secretary of State is subject to term limits. Most states with term limits specify that an office-holder may serve two consecutive terms. Most states do not specify that the two terms are an absolute limit, so that a former Secretary of State may usually run again after a time, usually unspecified, out of office.
States with term limits include:
Elected or appointed
In 35 states, the position is popularly elected. The remaining 12 offices are filled by appointment: 9 by the Governor and 3 by the state legislature. Of the 35 elected to office, 27 are Republican and 18 are Democratic.
States (9) in which secretaries are appointed by the governor include:
States (3) in which secretaries are appointed by the state legislature include:
|Quick facts about Secretaries of State|
Heading into the November election, Democrats held 6 of the seats and the Republicans held 1. Five incumbents sought re-election, and two - Robin Carnahan (MO) and lone Republican secretary Sam Reed (WA) - retired from office at the end of their terms. Incumbent Vermont secretary Jim Condos (D) was unopposed for re-election, and Montana secretary Linda McCulloch (D) won a re-election challenge against her predecessor, Republican Brad Johnson, whom she unseated in the 2008 general election by a slim margin of victory.
Following the 2012 elections, there are 27 Republican and 18 Democratic secretaries of state currently in office.
- Main article: Secretary of State elections, 2011
| Secretary of State 2011 elections|
| Kentucky • Louisiana • Mississippi
|2011 Election information|
| Primary election dates|
Statewide elections, 2011
|Secretary of State news headlines|
The Kentucky Secretary of State election of 2011 was held on November 8, 2011 following a primary election on May 17, 2011. Democrat attorney Alison Lundergan Grimes defeated Todd County businessman and teacher Bill Johnson.
The Louisiana Secretary of State election of 2011 was decided on October 22, 2011 in the primary election. Incumbent Republican Tom Schedler captured more than 50% of the vote in the blanket primary, winning re-election outright. The Louisiana general election was held on Saturday, November 19, 2011 but the office of secretary of state did not appear on the ballot.
The Mississippi Secretary of State election of 2011 was held on November 8, 2011 following a primary election on August 2nd, 2011. Incumbent Delbert Hosemann was unopposed; he was slated to face Reform Party candidate John Luke Pannell, but Pannell's name did not appear on the ballot.
- Main article: Secretary of State elections, 2010
Twenty-six secretary of state elections were scheduled for November 2, 2010. Of the 26 seats that were up for election, 15 had been held by a Democrat and 11 by a Republican. In total, Democrats lost 6 seats.
|Partisan breakdown of Secretaries of State|
|Party||Before November 2010 election||After November 2010 election|
|With 2010 elections||Unelected SOS||Total SOS||Post 2010 elections||Unelected SOS||Total SOS||Gain/loss legislators|
- State executive offices
- State executive official elections, 2012
- State executive official elections, 2013
- National Association of Secretaries of State
- Secretaries of State with term limits