Forget running for office — GOP secretary of state candidate Mark Meuser is “riding” for office.
Meuser, who completed an ironman in 2015, is riding his bike through all 58 counties of California — totaling over 5,000 miles — to spread his message that “elections matter.”
He has biked more than 2,500 miles already and is nearing the end of his state tour that is set to finish on Aug. 23 in Orange County.
Meuser rode into Auburn at 10 a.m. on Thursday at Regional Park and greeted a group of eight Placer County residents in his athletic shirt and Spandex shorts.
It was a hot morning and Meuser was answering questions and shaking hands before he could even get off of his bike or wipe the sweat from his brow.
It was the only day in his entire tour that he visited four cities in one day: Auburn, Grass Valley, Marysville and Yuba City.
Konstantinos Roditis, GOP controller candidate, joined Meuser’s bike ride to campaign alongside him.
Meuser said that he’s riding to bring more awareness to his campaign and connect with citizens of every county in California.
He said he was inspired by the way historic politicians would go from courthouse to courthouse to spread their message and wanted to incorporate that into his own campaign.
“I’m a lover of history. I have tons of books on old campaigns,” Meuser said.
Meuser also said that in the past campaigns he participated in he would always put on weight. He said he thought that biking through his campaign would help combat this.
“I’d love to end a campaign weighing less than when I started,” Meuser said.
Meuser’s campaign focuses on the idea “elections matter.” He said he hopes to clean up the voter rolls to make sure those that have moved or died are not still sent ballots.
In many cases, these ballots are filled out by other people and sent in anyway.
Even though the number of votes that the extra ballots cast are typically not substantial enough to sway an election, Meuser said it costs $4 to send one ballot via mail. Ensuring that no extra ballots are sent out results in less money being spent for elections.
“Why are we wasting money mailing those ballots to people that aren’t even voting?” Meuser said. “Even if you don’t believe in voter fraud, there’s still a good reason to clean up the voter rolls.”
In the primary elections, Meuser received approximately 2 million votes, which was over 1 million votes less than his opponent Alex Padilla who received over 3 million.
Meuser said, despite these margins, he thinks the election will be closer than we think.
“It’s actually looking pretty good for us,” Meuser said.