Democratic Incumbent Steve Simon Wins Minnesota Secretary of State Race

by | Nov 9, 2022 | Politics

Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon (D) has been projected to be reelected to a third term, defeating a Donald Trump-endorsed challenger who had promised to restrict certain voting methods and antagonized the state’s large community of Somali immigrants. Democrats had prioritized the Minnesota race, calling attention to its implications for the state’s future of free and fair elections. “Secretary of State Steve Simon makes it his job to defend democracy,” announced one campaign ad launched in September by a political action committee affiliated with the Democratic Association of Secretaries of State. “But this November, our rights are under attack.” AdvertisementSimon, who ran on protecting the integrity of elections against potential Trump-inspired efforts to overturn legitimate results, told HuffPost in August that Republican challenger Kim Crockett “could leverage [her] belief in conspiracy theories to at least slow down the process, or cast doubt on the process” in a way that “could have an effect on the certification process.” Crockett has called the last presidential election “rigged,” and in January agreed with an interviewer who said the 2020 election was “illegitimate” because Minnesota had expanded voter access during the pandemic. “I don’t think the word lawless is too strong,” Crockett said, referring to a consent decree Simon had signed that suspended the state’s requirement that mail-in ballots postmarked by Election Day be counted, as long as they were received within five business days of Election Day. An appeals court blocked the extension in late October 2020. Of Joe Biden’s victory in the state — the president bested Trump by more than a seven-point margin — Crockett has said, “I don’t think we’ll ever know precisely what happened.”AdvertisementCrockett, former vice president of the right-wing think tank Center of the American Experiment before running for office, has also earned a reputation for bigoted statements.“I think of America, the great assimilator, as a rubber band, but with this — we’re at the breaking point,” she told The New York Times in 2019. “These aren’t people coming from Norway, let’s put it that way. These people are very visible.”Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon (L) speaks with city clerk Melissa Kennedy (C) and election specialist Robert Stokka (R) during a public accuracy test of Election Day voting machines at the Municipal Services Center on Oct. 23, 2018 in St. Louis Park, outside Minneapolis, Minnesota.Stephen Maturen via Getty ImagesShe was referring to Minnesota’s large Somali community, whic …

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