As much as I thought I was being civically responsible, the truth was I wasn’t paying attention to outcome (policy), I was paying attention to politics. One of the most important aspects of my role here at the Chamber, is understanding policy and its impact on business. I have come to learn that there’s nothing more important than both sides of the aisle coming together to focus on issues that impact business because as we all know, if business isn’t thriving, neither are our schools, communities and other amenities that make where we live so great.
Over the past few years, I have paid close attention to what policy means to our businesses. If policy is focused on growing business, we then have a growing economy, i.e. strong business = strong community. This mid-term election candidates ran on their respective political platforms, (the what), these platforms then outline their policy options (the how) for their respective areas of influence. Therefore, paying attention to not only platform but policy is vastly important. Previously, I had not done that. As a Chamber, I/we can’t afford NOT to pay attention to that.
This election I was pleased to see the number of people who took advantage of the privilege of voting. The turnout was (unofficial when I researched) about 55.6%. The highest turnout in 32 years! Millennials were focused on getting their vote out to make sure their voice is heard. I couldn’t help thinking about my previous voting mindset, it was about politics (who they are) not policy, (what they will implement). What was the mindset of the midterm voters? Will the outcome of policy from our new legislators give voters what they wanted? That is to be determined. But thinking about it is important.
Republican, Democrat, doesn’t matter, but here’s what does, realizing the impact of thinking politics vs. policy. We all want what is best for our state and our community. We want what is best for our children, grandchildren and beyond. If we only pay attention to politics (hello political ads) we may lose sight of what happens after the election celebrations. Congratulations to all the candidates on their victory. There is a lot of work to be done, and red or blue, black or white, male or female, policy will ultimately determine the success or failure of our state. We’ll all be watching.
NACC President & CEO