All Politics Start at the Ballot Box

Farm Policy

5/19/2014 9:24 AM

Tomorrow is Pennsylvania’s primary election. If your house is like mine, you are being inundated with flyers from your party of choice begging you to support one candidate over another. Turn on the television and all sorts of campaign ads are running, touting the benefits or weaknesses of a candidate. And starting today, the phone blitz will go into high gear as calls flood in reminding my husband and me to go to the polls and vote.

However, the sad irony is the polls will most likely be vacant and the wait to vote will be nonexistent or minimal.

Personally, it’s quite sad that the majority of eligible voters will take a pass on voting in tomorrow’s primary. Some say since it’s not a presidential primary, what does it matter?

The presidential election gets the most attention. For example the debate is on whether Hilary Clinton and other presidential contenders for 2016 started shortly after the last presidential election. However, the president is only one small portion of the levels and sections of government that impact our daily lives.

For example, the congressional elections are another portion of the federal government and the starting point for most of the laws that govern the land. At the state level, the governor and General Assembly are up for grabs. The state houses of government decide the priority list of programs at the state and local levels, plus drive the decisions for state-level issues.

But, the polls will seem like ghost towns most of the day tomorrow. Pennsylvanians are leaving the decision on who will run our government to a small cross-section of residents, yet the majority say they are unhappy with the direction of the state or federal governments. To change the course of things, residents have the opportunity twice a year, first in the party primaries every spring, and again in the general elections – to “hire” or “fire” their elected officials. So mark your calendars and take a few minutes and vote tomorrow.

Need information on where to vote or to register to vote by the fall general election? You can find it here:

-- Charlene Shupp Espenshade, special sections editor 

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