Merrill campaigns in Andy

Published 10:34 pm Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Secretary of State candidate John Merrill campaigned in Andalusia on Tuesday morning.

The secretary of state is Alabama’s chief election official. In addition to being responsible for official ballots and election records, campaign reports are filed with the state office. In addition, the secretary of state is responsible for business records, and is the office manages corporate filings.

Merrill said if elected, he wants to further streamline the election process to allow deployed members of the military same-day voting, by electronic means.

“If the military can send secure documents electronically, they can vote securely,” he said.

Merrill also wants to streamline the process of business in corporations. In many states, that process can be completed in less than a week. In Alabama, it takes a minimum of a month.

“We’re going to fix that,” he said.

Merrill, a Republican, currently serves in the Alabama House of Representatives. Merrill, who previously served as director of community relations for Tuscaloosa County Schools, is a business development officer for First Federal Bank in Tuscaloosa.

Merrill, who has raised more than $500,000 in his quest to become secretary of state, said he has been interested in the office since meeting Don Siegelman at a campaign rally in 1978, when the former governor was a Secretary of State candidate.

“My goal has always been public service,” he said. “If we are elected, what comes next, the people will decide,” he said.

Merrill is a graduate of the University of Alabama, where he was president of the SGA.