The Atlanta-Journal Constitution reports that the lack of an incumbent candidate, the job's high visibility and Georgia's new voter ID law have boosted the job's profile.
The Georgia secretary of state's office has responsibility for a wide range of governmental functions, including oversight of elections; the licensing of 64 trades and professions; regulating investment advisers, the issuance and sales of securities; and the registration of corporations and non-profit groups.
Secretaries of state toiled in relative obscurity until the battle over Florida's electoral votes in 2000, when then-Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris became a national political figure, the newspaper reported. Harris went on to win a seat in the U.S. House and is now running for the U.S. Senate.
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