Sep 7, 2023
Today is the second episode of our three-week series celebrating National Voter Registration Month, covering a range of topics, from threats to our elections system to how to remove barriers to voter participation, and shedding light on the leaders who are helping to restore our democracy. In this episode, host and NewDEAL CEO Debbie Cox Bultan talks with New Mexico Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver, who has been running elections for almost seventeen years. Despite threats of violence, and an unrelenting barrage of misinformation and disinformation, she continues to find silver linings and remains wholeheartedly committed to her work. They talk about Toulouse Oliver's path to public service, the recently passed New Mexico Voting Rights Act, and the importance of balancing transparency and security in the voting process. Tune in to hear the Secretary's insights on the current state of American democracy and how she continues to find hope and inspiration.
IN THIS EPISODE
(0:02:41): Where Secretary Toulouse Oliver's passion for politics originated.
(0:03:45): Her journey into the County Clerk's office.
(0:04:11): The demographic in the County Clerk’s office when she took up a position there.
(0:05:42): How the Secretary's experience in the County Clerk’s office has helped her in her current role.
(0:07:44): The “big lie” in relation to voting that many Americans have bought into.
(0:09:01): Threats that Toulouse Oliver and her colleagues have been bombarded with since the 2020 election.
(0:09:54): How she navigates the challenges of being a protector of a democracy under threat.
(0:12:48): What the Secretary and her delegation were able to achieve at this year’s legislative session in New Mexico.
(0:16:34): The key factor that Toulous Oliver believes is responsible for their very productive legislative session.
(0:20:13): Why vote-by-mail became a partisan issue.
(0:23:31): The importance of enhancing the public’s understanding of the lifecycle of a ballot while maintaining privacy.
(0:29:00): The Secretary's number one concern heading into 2024 and her approach to dealing with it.
(0:33:47): Where she draws hope and inspiration from.