WALNUT CREEK, CA – On Thursday, Oct. 19 just prior to last weekend’s state Republican Party Convention, small business legal advocate, entrepreneur, and small business owner Mark Meuser announced his candidacy for California Secretary of State. The office, currently held by Alex Padilla, boasts a dismal national ranking of 43rd in voter turnout and is ranked almost dead last by The Pew Charitable Trust’s Election Performance Index. Padilla was elected in 2014 and can only run and serve for a second four-year term.
When asked why he was running for Secretary of State, Meuser replied, “A few months ago, I heard a news story that there are currently 11 counties in the state that have over 100% voter registration. I learned that it is the Secretary of State’s job to enforce all election laws in this state. As I studied the issue, I realized that the current Secretary of State has failed to enforce the basic election law requiring the removal from the voter rolls those who have died and moved.”
“If the Secretary of State has failed to enforce such a simple election law, what other election laws has he not enforced? Just how secure is our vote here in California?” Meuser asked.
“Participation in California elections remains criminally stagnant, relying on the appeal of current candidates or issues to buoy voter turnout instead of an innovative Secretary of State who uses every tool to enhance not only registration, but civic engagement,” he added.
Polling shows that 30% of Californians who aren’t registered to vote don’t bother, due to lack of confidence in elections and politics, while 36% of those actually registered cite lack of interest in politics, elections, or candidates for inconsistent voting.
“Californians continue to communicate clearly with their elected representatives and yet, nothing changes. My unique background and training have taught me to listen to people, craft simple solutions to the complex issues they’re facing, and work tirelessly to help them overcome those challenges,” said Meuser.
“Our Secretary of State needs to be someone who is looking out for all Californians by enhancing civic engagement in every community while increasing transparency. That’s why as Secretary of State, I will improve voters’ confidence in our elections, modernize the registration process for businesses, and enhance the People’s ability to use their initiative process.”
“The current Secretary of State’s office is antiquated and clearly still stuck in the Stone Age,” said Meuser’s spokesperson Derek Garner.
Mark Meuser is a small business legal advocate, native Californian, and a small business owner, committed to fighting for honest and fair elections.
From a young age, Meuser was an entrepreneur. At age 12, he would pick cherries in the morning and operate a street-side stand during the afternoon. He was also hard at work taking care of orphaned animals, bottle-feeding sheep, pigs, and cows. Meuser believes that these years of developing character through hard work were important, formative years in his life. By age 15, he was in a management position at a local restaurant and by age 21, he purchased his own pizza restaurant. While his restaurant business was thriving, Meuser began studying law. He graduated with honors from the Oak Brook College of Law.
To better help small business owners handle California’s complex regulatory environment, he opened The Meuser Law Group where he operated a diverse civil litigation team that represented both individuals and small businesses. The 43-year-old is now with the Dhillon Law Group in San Francisco.
According to Ballotpedia, Meuser ran unsuccessfully in 2014 against then-incumbent Mark DeSaulnier for the State Senate in the 7th District, which covers most of Contra Costa County. Then in 2014 he formed the Bay Area Republican Political Action Committee and funded it with $10,500 of his own money running ads in the Antioch Herald and TV ad production. It is no longer active.
For more information on Mueser’s campaign visit www.markmeuser.com. The election for Secretary of State will be held during the Primary, next June. Then the top two candidates regardless of party will face off in the November election.
Allen Payton contributed to this report.