Ahead of 2022 Midterms, States United Launches Voter Education Initiative About Statewide Officials’ Election Powers

Governor, Attorney General, and Secretary of State Races in November Will Determine the Future of Election Administration in the States

Published: 8.22.22

Washington, D.C. — Ahead of midterms this fall, when 39 states and the District of Columbia will choose their next governor, attorney general, and/or secretary of state, States United Democracy Center is launching an initiative to inform voters about the powers and responsibilities these officials have over elections. In selecting these statewide officials, voters will determine the way our future elections — including the 2024 Presidential and Congressional races — are administered, counted, and certified.  

“Most of us think about elections as big national events, but they’re run by the states,” said Joanna Lydgate, CEO of the States United Democracy Center. “That means the state officials who oversee elections—governors, secretaries of state, and attorneys general—are on the front lines of our democracy.  These state leaders protect our freedom to vote and have a huge impact on our experience at the polls.” 

States United Democracy Center’s Election Powers Campaign aims to educate voters about the leaders in their state who set the rules, run the elections, supervise the counting of ballots, certify the results, and protect the will of the people.  

Election Powers: Overview & Videos 

  • Governors play a key role in several aspects of election administration, by signing or vetoing legislation, state budgets, and executive orders that shape state election procedures and funding. In 2022, 36 states have contests for governor. View the Election Powers: Governors video here. 
  • Attorneys General defend state voting laws and election results in court, as the people’s lawyer. In some cases, they are involved in election law enforcement to address voter intimidation or election misconduct. In 2022, 29 states and the District of Columbia have contests for attorney general. View the Election Powers: Attorneys General video here. 
  • Secretaries of State are, in many cases, their state’s chief election official. In that role, they oversee election administration by certifying voting systems and results, manage registration and vote by mail applications, and support voters and local election officials. In 2022, 27 states have contests for secretary of state. View the Election Powers: Secretaries of State video here. 

As a snapshot of the election powers of each statewide office, this initiative is designed to illustrate to voters the roles and responsibilities of each of these positions has when it comes to election administration. In addition to the educational videos to be advertised across social media platforms, the States United Democracy Center also created more detailed analysis of statewide election powers here. 


About the States United Democracy Center 

The States United Democracy Center is a nonpartisan organization advancing free, fair, and secure elections. We focus on connecting state officials, law enforcement leaders, and pro-democracy partners across America with the tools and expertise they need to safeguard our democracy. For more information, visit statesuniteddemocracy.org.