When In Doubt, Choose Optimism

[Image via omag]

Like many people in the election community, I was surprised (and more than a little discouraged) late last week to see some potentially disappointing news about the future composition of the EAC.

But, having taken the weekend to “count to ten,” I have concluded that despite the news, nothing has changed my overall view: optimism.

These are, to be sure, challenging times in the election field; the job is as challenging as ever – and now there are new threats to address and confront. And yet, doing just that is precisely what election officials (and those of us who love them) are faced with every day.

Think about how much has happened in the last year and a half … even as the need to address the cybersecurity threat has grown, election administrators across the nation have stepped up to meet the challenge. The larger community (funders, election technology providers, nonprofits and others) have moved to establish relationships and conversations, create and share resources, and make the case to policymakers that more funding is necessary (though that’s something that still requires more optimism – *taptap*, is this thing on, Congress?). And, while it’s had some fits and starts, it appears the federal government is finding its way toward creating a structure to protect the voting process well into the future.

At the same time, the EAC has continued doing what it does best: convenings, research and timely resources for the field to use and share. There’s nothing to suggest that won’t carry on into the foreseeable future.

Colin Powell once observed that “perpetual optimism is a force multiplier” – something I see in action in the community every day. Yes, the prospect of change is a little nerve-wracking (and can occasionally make even an optimist like me angry), but come what may (including disappointments and setbacks), I like our chances.

Stay strong, #electiongeeks – and stay tuned …

1 Comment on "When In Doubt, Choose Optimism"

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