Democrats target Georgia Secretary of State in 2022 campaign

Updated: May. 27, 2021 at 9:00 AM EDT
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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - With Georgia expected to be a battleground state once again in next year’s elections, Democrats are targeting several offices that will be on the ballot in 2022, with the governor and secretary of state up for re-election.

Democrats Bee Nguyen and Manswell Peterson are competing to flip the Georgia Secretary of State office blue.

“I stood in line five hours in the last election, and that’s what really motivated this change for me,” said Manswell Peterson (D), a contender for Georgia secretary of state.

Peterson – a disabled Navy veteran, former police officer and college professor from Albany – hopes to transform the Secretary of State’s office. From cutting down on lines at the polls, to empowering veteran and women-owned small businesses, to revamping the website and customer service experience.

“It is a shamble right now,” said Peterson. “People, that is the biggest issue people are complaining about about the bad customer service and the website.”

Peterson also hopes to launch an app, with a three-tiered security system so registered voters can one day cast their ballots from their digital devices. While this idea is likely to face pushback, Peterson hopes to build broad coalitions among Republicans, Democrats and Libertarians.

“We’re going to work with them and show them this app can change Georgia. Georgia can lead the way for something again in this country,” said Peterson.

The Peach State went blue in the November Presidential election, and in the January Senate runoffs. The Democrats hadn’t seen such significant statewide victories in decades. Now party leaders hope to build on those wins for next year’s races.

“I think that democrats are in a strong position. We know that if we continue to build upon this broad-based coalition that brought many Georgians of different background together and stand in solidarity for the state of Georgia, we are going to win again,” said Bee Nguyen, a member of the Georgia House of Representatives (D-89th district).

Atlanta-area Democratic state representative Bee Nguyen says her years of advocacy on voting rights inside and outside the general assembly inspired her to run for Secretary of State.

“When I left legislative session, I felt it was my duty to step up and run for this office,” said Nguyen, who was a vocal opponent of Georgia’s new election law, SB 202.

Nguyen – the first Vietnamese-American elected to the Georgia legislature – says she would also like to see the Secretary of State’s office translate documents for immigrant business-owners, enhance consumer protections and increase resources and training for local election officials.

“I think we still have tremendous opportunity to make changes here,” said Nguyen. “I will not stop fighting for the right to vote for Georgians.”

The primaries are scheduled for May 2022. Before the primaries are held, candidates must qualify to be on the ballot next spring.

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