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California Lawmaker Wants A Non-Partisan Secretary of State’s Office

The California Secretary of State’s office would become non-partisan under a state lawmaker’s proposed constitutional amendment.

Republican Assemblymember Jeff Gorell authored the amendment. He says making the office that oversees the state’s elections non-partisan would enhance voter confidence.

The amendment would also give the job of drafting ballot language to the non-partisan Secretary of State’s office, taking that duty away from the Attorney General.

“The perception of that process would benefit, I think, by moving it over to an independent non-partisan elected Secretary of State’s office,” says Gorell.

St. Mary’s College politics professor Steve Woolpert says that part of the amendment is more about the likely party affiliation of the Attorney General.

“The Democrats who are likely to gain election to the Attorney General’s office, are going to be in a position to make decisions about state-wide ballot initiatives,” Woolpert says.

Two-thirds of the legislature would have to approve the amendment. It would then go to the voters in November.

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