A Democratic state senator from Missoula says he’s running for Montana Secretary of State next year.

Sen. Bryce Bennett is the first Democrat to announce that he’s running for Montana secretary of state in 2020.

Bennett said in a statement on Wednesday that he’s a “leading advocate” for voters and access to voting.

The secretary of state is Montana’s top election administrator.

Bennett, who directs a non-profit organization in Missoula, is the sponsor of bills that have made it easier for people to return their absentee ballots — and that streamlined the voter-registration process.

The current secretary of state, Republican Corey Stapleton, is running for governor next year.

Republican state Senate President Scott Sales of Bozeman announced earlier this year that he’s running for secretary of state in 2020.

Bennett has been a state lawmaker since 2011 — and was elected to the state Senate last year.

-Mike Dennison reporting for MTN News