State Capitol Busy As Candidate Filing Deadline Moves Up

Jan 10, 2020

Secretary of State Michael Adams signs filing paperwork Friday morning
Credit Stu Johnson

There was a flurry of activity at the state capitol Friday.  It was the filing deadline for several political offices including president, Congress, and state legislature.  A new law moved the filing deadline up from the end of January to the tenth.

It was also the first such experience for Michael Adams as Secretary of State . “This is actually the first time historically you’ve had the first week of a Secretary's term of office coincide with the last week of qualifying to be on the ballot.  It’s been a perfect storm.  Plus the election director who was here for 30 years retired at the end of last year, so I’ve been personally handling every single candidate filing to be on the ballot since I took over Monday morning at 8:00 a.m,” said Adams.

Adams noted filing activity for much of this week was less than two years ago.  By mid-morning today, Adams said about half as many candidates had filed as in 2018.

A series of presidential caucuses get underway next month with the first one in Iowa.  Adams said he doesn’t favor the idea of one national presidential primary because he believes it would benefit candidates with financial means and name recognition.  “The reason we have Iowa go early and New Hampshire go early and South Carolina and Nevada is so that we can incentivize retail politicking where people can get through all the media bubble and just walk up to a candidate and ask questions,” explained Adams.

Adams noted moving up the filing deadline hasn’t created too much of a learning curve for him because, as an election attorney, he was familiar with the process.​

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