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It's Time For Nonpartisan Leadership to Run State Elections

Editor's Note: This piece by Larry Diamond, Kevin Johnson, and Miles Rapoport originally published on The Hill, and in accordance with The Hill's policy has only been partially cross-posted on IVN with permission from the author.

"The United States is the only democracy in the world that asks its most senior election officials to straddle such a [partisan] divide. In other countries, elections are run by constitutionally established independent commissions or by technocratic agencies isolated from political influence. No other country uses partisan elections to select its senior election officials.

The argument often given in support of our unique approach is that elections make election officials more accountable. But in our increasingly polarized times, this logic of accountability is breaking down. Most secretaries of state are backed primarily by the voters of one party, who increasingly see the other side as a mortal threat. Worse, to win election or reelection, secretaries of state must first win nomination in low-turnout party primaries..."

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About the Author

Kevin Johnson

Kevin Johnson is the Executive Director of Election Reformers Network, nonpartisan organization that provides support to election reform initiatives in the United States that have potential for significant impact and multiparty support.

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