Pete Peterson, Republican candidate for California secretary of state, keeps racking up bipartisan endorsements in his election battle against state Sen. Alex Padilla.
that Peterson, executive director of Pepperdine University’s Davenport Institute for Public Engagement and Civic Leadership, now can add the ringing endorsements of the San Francisco Chronicle and U-T San Diego to the endorsements of the Los Angeles Times and even the Democratic mayor of San Jose, Chuck Reed.
The race could put the influential state office, which oversees registrations, elections, campaign contributions and business registration, back in Republican hands for the first time in eight years, since incumbent Democrat Debra Bowen was elected in 2006 and cannot seek another term.
Peterson, 47, of Santa Monica, says he plans to increase voter turnout by 10 percent in his first year if elected, whereas Padilla promises to add one million active, registered voters to the California lists in his first year in office if he wins, the Los Angeles Times reported
In debates, Peterson, 47, has stressed an approach involving more technology, especially on the internet, to better inform voters , and use of electronic voting machines, while Padilla, 41, says he entered the race out of concern over what he perceives as attempts to infringe on voting rights through purging of polls and requirements for identification at the polls.
Padilla also favors
allowing voters more poll options rather than limiting voters to a single site located near their home.
The Chronicle stated in its endorsement of Peterson, "It would be refreshing to bring in a chief elections officer with credentials and enthusiasm that are perfectly tailored to this job. Peterson is our choice," SFGate noted.
U-T stated, "A Republican but hardly a partisan, he has a well-developed action plan to increase voting, make voting information more available, make the campaign finance system far more transparent and have the state office be a helpful, encouraging partner to new business.
"Peterson would bring lots of energy and fresh thinking to a branch of state government badly in need of such a jolt. We urge voters to give him a chance to shake things up."
Both Peterson and Padilla have attacked the state's Cal-Access database of information on campaign spending, with Padilla saying in a debate, "It's not fast and it's certainly not user friendly. It's long overdue for an upgrade," the Times reported.
Peterson responded to the bi-partisan endorsements he has received by telling SFGate they "highlight the importance of bringing nonpartisan civic engagement experience to reforming this important office.
"I plan to make the office of secretary of state the leader in the fight in making Sacramento more transparent and more responsive to voters and small businesses. And this plan is receiving tremendous bi-partisan support."
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