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Over the past couple of weeks, I have been talking with candidates for Trimble County judge-executive and sheriff. We are presenting stories on the race for sheriff in the April 28 issue and for judge-executive race in the May 5 issue.
I wish I could do more in-depth stories on the magistrate and jailer races, but I had to limit myself to the top two races. There just isn’t enough time in a small newspaper office to do it all.
Rest assured, all candidates who turned in their completed questionnaire/profile forms will be published in the May 5 issue of The Trimble Banner. That means everyone should have had at least two chances to get their names and their messages out to the voters.
Every election, I do my best to encourage registered voters to exercise their rights, as Americans, to cast their ballots. This year, the Primary Election is May 18. I learned the hard way when I first started working at our sister paper, The News-Democrat in Carroll County. Too late, I found that, for local races, the Primary IS the election. As most candidates are Democrats, the process of nominating the top candidate for the November ballot, essentially, is the race itself. With no Republican or Independent opposition, the General Election is almost moot.
So, keep in mind that the Primary here is very important, and I urge you to take the time to vote. If you won’t be in town that day, make sure to file an absentee ballot. Contact County Clerk Jerry Powell’s office for more information about voting. His number is (502) 255-7174.
Voting is a right that not every other country gives its citizens, and it is not to be taken lightly. Regardless of whether you like the incumbent or you prefer his or her challenger, it is imperative that you make your choice known at the polls. The best way for democracy to work is for everyone eligible to cast a ballot.
For me, this election is very different from the 2006 election. At that point, I knew little about any of the candidates or even the incumbents in Trimble County. Even though I lived here for a year or so, I was editor of our sister paper in Carroll County, The News-Democrat, and all I knew were the candidates over there.
I’m very glad to have had a full year over here to get to know almost everyone who will be involved in these races. If I haven’t met a candidate, I have read their questionnaire responses, so I have a good idea of who’s getting my vote.
Of course, I will not give any of that away here – or anywhere. I invoke the voter’s privilege of keeping my choices private.
It’s true – I’m not shy about expressing my opinions; but, in this case, I will keep them to myself. As the editor of the Banner, it is essential that every candidate is treated fairly in our editorial pages.
Landmark’s policy, in fact, is for our papers not to endorse candidates. We leave that for the bigger newspapers covering the bigger elections. I think it’s the best policy, really. It is our job to inform our readers and encourage them to go to the polls. And it is our duty to leave no one out and give every candidate the same opportunities to express themselves.
That said, there are still a couple of candidates who have not turned in their questionnaires. I would encourage them to get those to me very soon so I can include them with the others in the May 5 issue. The deadline we set for turning them in had more to do with getting them online at MyTrimbleNews.com.
So, check out the Banner over the next few weeks to find out more about the candidates in the local races. Then get out and vote on May 18.
Letter to the editor reminder
Just to reiterate, no anonymous letters are ever published in The Banner. We recently received one regarding the election. Between being unsigned and the questionable content, the writer should know it won’t be printed.
Phyllis McLaughlin is editor of The Trimble Banner and lives in Milton.