Our View: Your vote does count, but only if you actually vote

Published 10:22 am Thursday, May 24, 2018

Tuesday’s primary election decided three local offices — sheriff, coroner and fourth-district magistrate.

However, only 27 percent of registered voters in our county cast their ballots, according to early estimates from Clark County Clerk Michelle Turner.

Less than a third of the eligible voters determined not only who would be running in the November election, but who would serve in three critical offices in our community.

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To put it simply, that’s sad.

Primary voting is traditionally low as most voters wait until November to cast their ballot. But why?

Primary elections are still an important part of the electoral process. Traditionally, primaries dictate which candidates will appear on the ballot in November. However, as with Tuesday’s local primary, when only candidates from a single party file for office, the primary determines who will retain or gain that office moving forward.

It’s not a part of process to be taken lightly, as we have mentioned time and again.

It’s hard to understand why someone with a voice would choose not to use it. That is essentially what approximately 75 percent of registered voters in Kentucky did Tuesday, according to Secretary of State Allison Lundergan Grimes’ estimates of 23 percent voter turnout.

And that doesn’t include the thousands of others who are eligible to vote but opt not to register at all.

We understand. It can sometimes feel like your vote doesn’t count, your voice is silenced or your opinion doesn’t matter.

But, that is not the case.

Each individual on the ballot is responsible in one way or another for your tax dollars and how they benefit our state and our community. Whether that means they vote on tax rates, on use of county funds, on programs to be funded with taxpayer money or are in charge of budgeting taxpayer money in their respective role, each of them is accountable to you — the voter, the taxpayer, the citizen of Clark County.

Elected officials are there to be your representatives. Their vote should be a reflection of their constituents’ needs and desires.

Shouldn’t we want to take charge of who is casting votes, making decisions and spending money at all levels of government? It’s a right many should stop taking for granted.

While many missed out on the opportuinty to do that this week, there is still a chance in November, when even more races will be decided.

If you are registered, don’t forget to vote. It is your right and your responsibility.

If you are not registered, visit voteky.org and register. There you can also learn where you vote when the day comes.

There’s really no excuse not to be actively involved in this critical decision-making process.