Our View: Thanks for voting | TheUnion.com

Our View: Thanks for voting

It’s not often that elections roll around.

A couple of times in even-numbered years, maybe a random election in an odd-numbered one. Those of us who are busy with jobs, spouse, kids, life — all of us, in some fashion — can easily forget. Blink and you might pass right by, another stop missed on the calendar.

Or maybe that’s how it used to be. Not anymore, and not here in Nevada County.

This county likes to boast about its turnout, as it should. We had 87.59% turnout in November 2020, and 73.34% in the September gubernatorial recall.

It’s easier than ever to vote, and no reason not to.

The next election is June 7, but you might already have a ballot in hand, mailed to you this week.

The governor’s race is on there, as is a U.S. Senate seat, House seats, and plenty of spots on the state Legislature.

The most important races are lower down. It’s there you’ll find candidates for Nevada County clerk-recorder/registrar of voters, assessor, auditor-controller, Board of Supervisors Districts 3 and 4, and Nevada City Council.

These local races are essential parts of the governmental machine that comprise this community. Governor and senator are important, no doubt. They tend to get people the most riled up, and draw more people to the polls.

But it’s the local races that matter the most to everyday life here. It’s the supervisors who approve grant funding, which includes everything from behavioral health to fire mitigation. It’s the council that’s listening to your complaints on trash collection or tree cutting.

Educating ourselves about the candidates is one of the most important responsibilities we have as citizens. Several candidate forums were held featuring local candidates. Kudos to the ones who showed up. You can find recordings of the League of Women Voters of Western Nevada County forums at Nevada County Media’s YouTube page — http://www.youtube.com/c/NevadaCountyDigitalMediaCenterNCTV.

Educating yourself is key. So is casting a ballot.

Voting isn’t just a right. It’s a civic responsibility. We are the ones who are fortunate enough to live in this country, at this time, and it’s our job to ensure the best people are put in elected positions.

The thing is, it’s easy to vote. A ballot is mailed to every registered Nevada County voter. You can fill it out and mail it back, no postage required. Alternatively, you can visit one of several official ballot drop-off spots across the county, and leave your ballot there.

This is your shot to have a voice in who leads us. Want a multi-party system? Then vote third party on the local level, and help those candidates rise to higher office.

We’ll do this again in November, and then have a long wait before we return to the polls.

So seize the ballot, and cast it.

Participation doesn’t have to stop there. People can become election observers, getting the chance to view firsthand how the ballot counting process works.

Our country is divided, more than it’s been in decades. Many people don’t believe in the integrity of elections even though they cannot find credible evidence any sort of fraud widespread enough to change outcomes, and not for lack of looking.

Here’s a chance to watch a local election happen in real time.

Talk to your friends and neighbors. Look at the election information mailed to you, and talk to your kids about it. Set the stage for 18 year olds across the country that will stay set their whole lives.

Then, whether it’s in person, at a drop box or by mail, cast your ballot. If it’s by mail, you can check the status online. Click the link until you get to the message that states:

Thanks for voting.

The weekly Our View editorial represents the consensus opinion of The Union Editorial Board, a group of editors and writers from The Union, as well as informed community members. Contact the board at EditBoard@TheUnion.com

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