Cities, towns see low voter turnout

Published 11:14 pm Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Chilton County’s municipal elections were plagued by low voter turnout, going by the outlook of poll workers yesterday. At first guess, no more than a third of registered voters showed up to cast their ballot for mayor and council members.

Based on public response to political forums that were held in some of the municipalities, these results come at little surprise. Of course, there is always the factor of weather, which was not the most ideal for getting out on the road yesterday.

Who knows how different the outcome may have been if more citizens had turned out to elect their local leaders? Three of yesterday’s municipal elections were decided by less than 10 votes. Seven votes made the difference in Maplesville’s mayoral election, while two of Jemison’s council seats were decided by just two votes apiece.

It is useless for non-voters to say that they are unhappy with the election results because they chose not to be a part of the people’s voice that determines those results. Those who didn’t participate in the election are making it apparent that they did not have an opinion one way or the other regarding the election.

When it came time to qualify for these elected offices, there was relatively high interest from the public. This interest was not reflected in the voting public, however.

It’s easy for us to talk about how thankful we are to have the freedom and the right to vote, but when we have the opportunity to put that right into effect and yet do not take that opportunity, it becomes null and void.

Perhaps many of those who did not vote did not like any of the candidates who were up for the positions that affected them. In this case, we should find out everything we can about the candidates and vote for the one that most represents the kind of person we would like to see in that particular office. Otherwise, we are simply giving up.