NASS Resolution Affirming the Conduct of Elections in a Nonpartisan Manner

Approved on February 7, 2005; Reaffirmed on February 1, 2010; February 13, 2015; February 2, 2020

WHEREAS, to ensure confidence and trust in our democratic process, it is imperative that elections be run in a fair and professional manner by the local, state and federal officials who are charged with such responsibilities;

WHEREAS, in a majority of states, election administration comes under the authority of the Secretary of State;

WHEREAS, each member of the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS) takes a state oath of office in which we promise to faithfully and impartially discharge the duties of the office;

WHEREAS, members take that oath seriously and work every day to ensure that elections are run in a fair and nonpartisan manner so that all voters, regardless of political affiliation, are well-served;

WHEREAS, chief state election officials are accountable to a network of thousands of federal, state and local officials, with whom we strive to create a system of checks and balances that ensures the fair and equal application of election laws and procedures, as well as the impartial and professional conduct of the election itself;

WHEREAS, we are bound to uphold state and federal ethics and election laws, and we must abide by the related rulings of our state and federal courts;

WHEREAS, to better ensure the perception of impartiality, many states allow observers from the major political parties to watch the votes being cast and counted;

WHEREAS, to avoid any perceived conflicts of interest, many Secretaries of State take additional steps to remain neutral and do not accept campaign roles or actively campaign for any candidates or for or against ballot issues;

WHEREAS, we are dedicated to working together in bipartisan fashion as members of the National Association of Secretaries of State to share practices and to improve the voting process;

WHEREAS, the public has the ability to determine by election most state leaders who supervise the conduct of elections, and therefore, we must honor this public trust and carry out our duties with the utmost integrity avoiding even the appearance of impropriety;

NOW BE IT RESOLVED that, in accordance with federal and state law, NASS is dedicated to ensuring the conduct of elections in a fair and neutral manner.

EXPIRES: Winter 2025