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Image: Steve Hobbs
Steve Hobbs poses in front of photos of people who previously held the office on Nov. 22, 2021, at the Capitol in Olympia, Wash.Ted S. Warren / AP file

Washington poised to elect first non-Republican secretary of state in more than 60 years

The race between the Democratic incumbent and a nonpartisan candidate means the state will elect its first non-Republican secretary since 1960.


The race for Secretary of State in Washington is clear now that the NBC News Decision Desk has projected the two candidates who will advance to the general election.

Incumbent Steve Hobbs, a Democrat, is set to face nonpartisan candidate Julie Anderson in the Nov. 8 general election. Hobbs was appointed by Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee after Kim Wyman resigned and joined the Department of Homeland Security mid-term. (Wyman is a Republican, who was elected to the secretary of state post three times.)

Interestingly, this means that Washington state will elect its first non-Republican Secretary of State since 1960. The last non-Republican Secretary of State to serve there was Vic Meyers who was elected in 1956 and served two terms until Republican Lud Kramer began the almost 58-year GOP streak, according to the Secretary of State’s website.

(Remember: While the current incumbent is a Democrat, he was appointed after the resignation of the incumbent Republican).

This race is one of 26 Secretary of State elections this year, with only three of those still awaiting primary elections. Two nominees are running unopposed in Nebraska and Vermont.

Of the 44 candidates who have advanced to the general election so far, 24 are male, 31 are white, three have been endorsed by President Trump in their primary, and at least seven have questioned the results of the 2020 election at some point.