Jocelyn Benson

The most qualified Secretary of State candidate in the country

Jocelyn Benson

Michigan Secretary of State

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2018 Result: Benson wins by nearly 9-point margin (52.8% to 44%)

Jocelyn Benson knows more than most about the important role of Secretary of State (SOS) in Michigan. In fact, she literally wrote the book on the subject. Benson is the author of Secretaries of State: Guardians of the Democratic Process, the first major book to study the role of the SOS in enforcing election and campaign finance laws, as well as promoting fair, accessible and secure elections. 

Benson is CEO and Executive Director of the Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE), a national nonprofit, and the former dean of Wayne State University Law School in Detroit, Michigan. She graduated from Wellesley College, where she founded the now-annual Women in American Political Activism conference, and received a Master's degree in Sociology as a Marshall Scholar at Oxford University. Benson earned her JD from Harvard University Law School.

Mary Treder Lang is the Republican candidate for Secretary of State. Ms. Lang has the support of the DeVos family. The SOS is extremely important to the DeVos family. The current Republican Secretary of States is Ruth Johnson, who was Dick DeVos's running mate when he ran (and lost) the race for Governor.

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Rating Services

Campaign Finance

Candidate Name

Jocelyn Benson (D)

Mary Treder Lang (R)

Campaign Spending

$1.15M raised; $951K Cash on hand (as of 9/14)

$319K rasised; $46K Cash on hand (as of 9/14)

Outside Spending

None reported.

Ms. Lang has the support of the Devos family.

Polling Results

Election Results

Secretary of State

2014: R+11

2010: R+6

Presidential Elections

2016: R+0.13

2012: D+9.5

2008: D+16.5



Donald Trump carried Michigan by 0.13 percent in 2016. Any efforts to weaken voter registration efforts in Michigan could play a major role in deciding the winner of the 2020 Presidential election, which makes the 2018 Secretary of State race a critical piece for change.

Incumbent Republican SOS Ruth Johnson is term-limited in 2018, making this an open seat.

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