Secretary of State
Businesses of a new stripe are registering in a Minnesota.
The final election results are in: Minnesota had its lowest voter turnout since 1986. The state canvassing board officially certified the 2014 voter turnout at 50.5 percent. It’s one of the last official acts for Secretary of State Mark Ritchie.
Steve Simon is preparing to hop from one branch of Minnesota’s government to another.
When you voted Tuesday, you probably noticed a lot of judges on the ballot. This puzzled Kirk from Oak Park Heights because he knows the governor also appoints them. On Washington County’s sample ballot, there were 28 judge seats. Twenty-four were unopposed.
Minnesota’s pride in its voter turnout took a beating this midterm election, with only about half of eligible voters taking the trouble to show up. Unofficial numbers from the secretary of state estimate Tuesday’s turnout at 50.31 percent, well below the projection of 55 to 60 percent.
Democratic state Rep. Steve Simon has been elected secretary of state, defeating Republican former state Rep. Dan Severson. Simon will take over as Minnesota’s chief elections officer from Democrat Mark Ritchie, who chose not to run again.
Minnesotans are proud to say they lead the nation in turnout, and a change in state law meant some people voted early instead of waiting for Election Day.
Republican Secretary of State hopeful Dan Severson is suggesting his website was hacked for political reasons. Severson’s campaign website crashed earlier this week. At news conference in St. Paul Friday, he said an early investigation shows it was breached by outsiders but they haven’t identified who did it.
At the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs, future leaders heard from the original “Madam Secretary” — Madeleine Albright.
Republican Secretary of State hopeful Dan Severson says Minnesota should do more to help military members overseas to cast their ballots. Dan Severson says delays in mailing ballots and lack of awareness has brought military voter participation as low as 5 percent.
Election Day is about three weeks away and early voting is already proving to be more popular this year. The Secretary of State’s Office has released new numbers saying they’ve accepted more than 22,000 absentee ballots.
Minnesota Secretary of State Mark Ritchie says he’ll work on the campaign to bring the World Fair to Minnesota when he leaves office. Ritchie decided against seeking another term as state secretary and will leave the office after the general election.
Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will be in St. Paul this afternoon. Clinton will be signing copies of her memoir “Hard Choices” at Common Good Books on Snelling Avenue from 2:15 to 4:15 p.m.
Minnesota Republicans won’t have a primary for the open secretary of state’s office. Former state Sen. John Howe of Red Wing pulled out of the race Thursday, clearing the way to the fall ballot for the GOP’s endorsed candidate, Dan Severson. Howe lost at last weekend’s state party convention but left open the possibility of pressing on to an August primary election against Severson, a former legislator who sought the office unsuccessfully in 2010.
State Rep. Steve Simon won the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party’s endorsement on Saturday for secretary of state, an office that has played a key role in some close recent elections. Simon was declared the winner by acclamation in the only competitive race at the party’s state convention after state Rep. Debra Hilstrom conceded.