Jim Henderson is ahead of most of us on the secretary of the commonwealth. Few voters know the range of responsibilities. Today’s guest knows all that and more. He can say what he sees as the failures of the office, how he would fix those, and what else he would add, subtract, and alter.
He is running against two-decade incumbent William Galvin. Henderson calls for bringing the functions of the secretary into this century, to make use of technology for accessible information, and broaden that accessibility to public records with powerful search engines and, for non-technocrats, with more regional offices.
We had a ranging discussion on the problems and potential of the office, concentrating on elections and pubic records. Henderson explains his ideas on ranked and instant-runoff voting and the possibility of eliminating party primaries for statewide offices. He is particularly strong on using database and search technologies to put the public in public records.
He knows he first has to make enough voters aware of the roles of the secretary, enough to care who holds the office. He says once he explains about elections and records, people get with him pretty quickly. He has quite a battle and seems up for it.
WABAC Machine Note: Ryan and Mike had a connection with Jim three and one-half years ago. We joined another blogger on the Worcester CCA TV for chatter on whether Deval Patrick could become our governor. The clip is here. There a certain symmetry to having him on our show.