Testimony: Requiring the Secretary of State to Resign Before Running for Office (LD 484)


Testimony in Support of LD 484, “An Act to Prevent a Conflict of Interest in State Elections by Requiring the Secretary of State to Resign Before Running for Elected Office”

Senator Nangle, Representative Stover, and the distinguished members of the Committee on Veterans and Legal Affairs, my name is Nick Murray and I serve as director of policy for Maine Policy Institute. We are a free market think tank, a nonpartisan, non-profit organization that advocates for individual liberty and economic freedom in Maine. Thank you for the opportunity to testify in support of LD 484

This bill simply would require the sitting Secretary of State (SoS), if he or she intends to run for elected office in the state, to resign from the post in order to do so.

LD 484 should not be necessary, because the Secretary of State should be someone who is a truly non-partisan referee of the state’s elections. 

Unfortunately, since our current SoS, and several former, have been elected from the Legislature itself, lawmakers must ensure that no perception of impropriety can exist in the election process.

Our democratic mechanisms are too important to be ceded to partisan administrators. Nobody should be allowed to oversee an election in which they are running for office. Please deem LD 484 “Ought To Pass” and protect the important perception of impartiality in the administration of elections. Thank you for your time and consideration.