Meet the Candidates: California Secretary of State

Meet Alex Padilla (D) and Mark Meuser (R), California’s secretary of state candidates for 2018.
Photos supplied by California Office of the Secretary of State

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Alex Padilla Alex Padilla, D., is the current secretary of state who previously served as a state senator. Before his time in state politics, Padilla served on the Los Angeles City Council from 1999 to 2006, serving as its president for the final five years of his term. He earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1994. He worked as a political staffer for a number of politicians and was voted president of the League of California Cities in 1995. He is perhaps best known for his legislation that led to a ban on single-use plastic bags at grocery store checkouts in California. Official campaign statement: “I’m running to continue serving as your Secretary of State. This is a critical time for voting rights and I have a proven record of getting results. In my first term, I’ve worked to expand access to the ballot box, protect our elections’ security, and because of my work, California is now adding millions of eligible voters to its rolls. Our Secretary of State must deliver for Californians. As President of Los Angeles City Council, State Senator, and your Secretary of State, I’ve done just that. I respectfully ask for your vote. Visit to learn more.”

Mark P. Meuser

Mark Meuser, R., is a small business owner and attorney who operates the Meuser Law Group. He is known for representing litigants in civil matters against activist groups and corporations. At an early age, Meuser ran a pizza business, and while his businesses were being operated he began studying law at the Oak Brook college of Law. He is running on a campaign of modernizing the secretary of state’s office and remedying what he considers to be some of the shortcomings with voter and election integrity. Official campaign statement: “Elections Matter. Recently, the Election Integrity Project of California filed a lawsuit where they alleged that California has more registered voters than eligible voters, 101% to be precise. Los Angeles County alone has 144% voter registration. Bloated voter rolls cost the taxpayers money to send unnecessary balloting materials. They also increase the opportunity for fraud. We need to remove from the rolls, those who have died, have moved, non-citizens, duplicate and fictitious registrations. Elections are critical to enable Californians to inform our government how we desire to be governed. Fair elections begin with accurate voter rolls, where only those who are eligible to vote are registered. The Secretary of State is responsible for maintaining the voter rolls. If the rolls remain bloated, special interests are able to use money and influence to elect bought and paid for politicians. Every day, I hear first-hand accounts of Californians who have watched as a non-citizen voted or learned that a dead relative voted. I am a native Californian who practices Constitutional and Election law. When I see an injustice, I stand up and help those in need. I have fought for the rights of the disabled and the free speech rights of college students, and I have won. Now I ask you to vote for me to clean up California’s bloated voter rolls. I will to use technology and databases to clean up our voter rolls so that unauthorized votes do not dilute our voice. Elections Matter.”
The Secretary of State is California’s chief elections officer who oversees statewide elections and ensures the integrity of the voting and election systems. The Secretary of State also regulates notaries, maintains business files, authenticates trademarks and enables secured creditors to protect their financial interests. The Secretary of State is also responsible for acquiring and preserving historical state artifacts and treasures.]]>

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