LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The Arkansas State Capitol was buzzing with activity Tuesday afternoon as candidates rushed to officially file for a chance to lead.

Candidate filing began at noon, a necessary step for those intending on running for office. Everyone from potential governors to representatives filed into the capitol rotunda, registering with their party and making their way around to various stops and stations.

For some politicians who have previously run for office, this was nothing extraordinary,  

But others are new to state government and are filing for the very first time.

One example is Josh Price, a Democrat running for Secretary of State. Price comes from the Pulaski County Election Commission, where he says he saw issues with how elections were handled. Now, he says he wants to use that background to make voting easier and fairer for all.

“Arkansas is rated dead last in the country for voter registration, dead last for voter turnout, number one for rejection of absentee ballots,” Price said. “We can do a lot better.”

Price is running in a field of four – current Secretary of State John Thurston (R), Eddie Joe Williams (R), and Anna Beth Gorman (D).

Two other first-time candidates who filed on day one are both running for governor.

Democrat Chris Jones says he’s already made progress campaigning even before filing.

“Right now, we’re on a 75-county province of Arkansas tour,” Jones explained. “We hit 70 of those 75 counties, so only five left to go.” 

Jones was also able to meet one of his opponents while filling out registration: Republican Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who filed just over two hours into the day and was accompanied by family. She says this is just stop one on a busy campaign week in Arkansas.

“Right now, I think the message of taking Arkansas to the next level and moving Arkansas to the top of the pack is one that’s clearly resonated,” Sanders said, “and we’re going to keep spreading that for the next year and hope for a great November.”

Candidates have until March first to file their paperwork