The Marion County Clerk made her announcement at the Statehouse today in Indianapolis.
Here's the official announcement:
Standing before the state’s capitol, Marion County Clerk Beth White today announced that she is seeking the Democratic nomination for Indiana Secretary of State in 2014.
“Our state’s history is steeped in values like working hard, telling the truth and doing right by our friends, family and neighbors – values I like to call Hoosier common sense,” White said. “These are the values I want to bring to Indianapolis as your next Secretary of State.”
Now serving her second term as Marion County Clerk, White is the chief election official for the nation’s 13th largest city and has championed voters’ rights by expanding early voting, testifying before the legislature to remove barriers to voting and visiting local schools to help young students engage in the voting process. As clerk, she also is the chief fiscal agent and record keeper for the county’s Superior and Circuit Courts.
In today’s announcement, White noted a 2011 University of Pennsylvania study that found only 38% of US adults could name the three branches of government; an alarming 33% could not name one. This movement away from civics in the classroom has lead to apathy on Election Day, and Indiana finds itself 48th in voter turnout according to the Indiana State Bar Association’s 2011 Civic Health Index.
“We started yVote! during the 2008 election to capture the enthusiasm to invigorate political interest in our young people,” White said. “Since then more than 2,500 students have registered to vote through this program, and I’m hopeful that bringing the Constitution back to the classroom will lead to a more engaged electorate.”
Before being sworn into office in 2007, White was a top aide to Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson and was a member of the Gov. Frank O’Bannon administration, serving as Chief Legal Counsel and Director of Job Training for the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. As a college student, she interned for Congressman Lee Hamilton and State Senator Vi Simpson.
“I’ve had the opportunity to work with public servants who understood the value of inclusiveness. They worked hard to make sure everyone had a seat at the table,” added White. “As Indiana’s next Secretary of State, I hope to follow in their footsteps and leave our state a better place for the next generation of Hoosiers.”
A native of Bloomington, Clerk White is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Indiana University at Bloomington and earned her law degree from Georgetown University in Washington. She resides in Irvington on the eastside of Indianapolis with her husband, Neil Marcus, and their young son, Nathaniel. For more information about White’s campaign, visit www.bethwhite.org.