After years of the United States Election Assistance Commission having NO commissioners, tonight in a flurry of activity the Senate confirmed the following three members of the EAC: Thomas Hicks, Matthew Masterson, and Christy McCormick. These are two Republican-chosen commissioners and one Democrat. It takes three votes for any significant action on the commission. People in the know have high hopes for these three commissioners (a fourth nominee, Matthew Butler, has not yet had a chance for a hearing, after Myrna Perez withdrew). We will see.
I detail the dysfunction of the EAC in The Voting Wars, and as I recently remarked: “there was a time when a few courageous EAC commissioners could have made the Commission something to get above the partisan sniping. But they were shut down and that moment regrettably has passed.” The Republican House has voted to defund the agency, and there is great mistrust of the agency from some Republicans. Perhaps things will be better this time around. The agency has some important functions to fulfill, especially related to approval of voting technology and collection of election related data.
We can always hope.