The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Opinion

March 11, 2012

This Tuesday, think before casting a vote

When the polls open at 7 a.m. on Tuesday, Limestone Countians will once again be given the chance to take part in a process that many of us take for granted — the right to vote.

Though some may say, “It’s only a primary election,” all elections should be treated as important, and this one is no different. The turning of the tide from a predominately Democratic county to a more Republican stronghold could lead to a large voter turnout for an election that’s “only a primary.”

The News Courier does not offer recommendations or endorsements of primary candidates. However, we ask each person who casts a ballot on Tuesday to think before you vote.

It’s easy these days to be swayed by campaign promises or a winning smile with a firm handshake. Conventional wisdom also says the candidate with the biggest war chest will emerge victorious because they have more money to spend on roadway signs, commercials and advertising.

The candidate with the most money, best handshake or best smile, however, may not be what’s best for Limestone County. That’s why we ask that you think before you vote.

For the last several weeks, The News Courier has allowed each candidate to submit an article that appeared on the front page of our Wednesday editions. On Sundays, we asked candidates a series of job-specific questions and let them provide answers.

In some cases, we were pleased by the results. Some responses, however, had us scratching our heads. Those who missed out on the articles and Q-and-A sessions can find them on our website, enewscourier.com, under the “Election 2012” tab.

Last month, we teamed with Athens State University, the Greater Limestone Chamber of Commerce and the Alabama Veterans Museum to sponsor a political forum that was well attended. We were heartened by the amount of interest in the local races and hope everyone who attended left knowing more about each candidate.

Being an elected official isn’t a job for everyone, and we applaud those who have a desire to serve the public. We have found no major faults with any of the candidates, though some seem to have a greater knowledge on the issues than others.

When you cast your vote on Tuesday, think it through. The candidate who is best for the future of Limestone County may not be your neighbor, a fellow church member or even a friend. And while politics can often be a popularity contest, this election should be more about choosing candidates who can move the county forward in a positive direction.

Choose the candidate who will do the best for all Limestone Countians, not just a few.

May the best candidate win.

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