The Secretaries of State: Bad News for Some Swing State Democrats

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Nov. 3 2010 3:12 PM

The Secretaries of State: Bad News for Some Swing State Democrats

One of the possible Democratic nightmares I pointed out on Monday was the possible loss of Secretaries of State in swing states, losses that would create some more impediments to voting in 2012. For example, forgotten in the afterglow of the 2008 election: Decisions by Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner that made it easier for people to cast provisional ballots and to stay on the voting roles.

Michelle Malkin points out that Republicans won Brunner's office (she left it for a disastrous Senate primary bid against Lee Fisher, who went on to a disastrous campaign against Rob Portman) and, less importantly, the SoS office in Kansas; the winner there was rising star Kris Kobach, a co-author of Arizona's election law. And Democrats lost the Colorado Secretary of State offices even as they were winning the Senate and gubernatorial races. But Democrats dodged bullets in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and California (where youthful African-American candidate Damon Dunn was said to be a star in the making, and outraised the Democratic incumbent).

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So mixed news for Democrats. But we've seen in past elections that last-minute announcements of voter fraud suspicions in certain states can ripple into other states.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. You can reach him at daveweigel@gmail.com, or tweet at him @daveweigel.