Our primary turnout was painfully low

Published 11:15 am Monday, September 15, 2008

We know a primary may not mean much to some people, such as the ones who think the ‘real’ election is in November. But every election is important, especially when local races are on the ballot.

For the Sept. 9 primary election as reported in Sunday’s Herald, a mere 16 percent of Mower County registered voters went to the polls. Out of the 21,640 voters in Mower County, only 3,492 voted.

It should have been more.

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While it’s true primaries are notorious for low voter turnout and that even nearby Freeborn County registered at only 22 percent as reported by the Albert Lea Tribune, by not voting, voters missed an opportunity to make their opinions count.

They also missed the chance to help narrow down the candidates in our races for city council, county commissioner and mayor.

This year’s presidential contest is turning into an epic face off that seems to be growing more popular as the Nov. 4 general election nears. As a result, voter turnout across the country, including Southern Minnesota, will likely be high.

We hope the Mower County turnout considerably improves on Nov. 4, not only because of the presidential election, but for our local races as well. We deserve it, and so do the candidates.