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Our opinion: A time to refresh

As the new year turns over, there will be many new faces in the political world, from school boards all the way up to the Minnesota legislature.

Oftentimes, getting new blood into these roles can introduce new ideas and new methods in order to work for the people who put you there — the voters.

It’s an exciting moment for those taking up these important roles as they exercise their positions to enact those things that will benefit those people they are representing.

However, it should be observed that they are coming into a difficult position. For many of these people, especially on the state level, there has rarely been such an extreme disconnect between elected officials than there is now.

The gulf between Republican and Democrat seems as if it’s never been wider and in turn the responsibility on newly elected officials has never been so hefty.

Voting along party lines is almost a guarantee any more as ideologies control more than constituent wellbeing.

Perhaps it isn’t so prevalent at the local levels, but our advice is the same. Remember the voters and their voices — all of them. You may be part of a party, but when the words, “I represent the constituents in my area,” you are vowing to represent everybody.

There will always be a party divide, but simply voting for a party will ensure that the divide continues.

When the oath of office is taken in these next few days, agree to represent the voice of all voters, not just those that voted  for you.

A new year offers new opportunities and while we congratulate those new public officers we also hope that they have the vision to see further than the lines that separate. It’s important that you listen to each person that voices concerns, who is frustrated  or angry.

You are our voice. It’s time to listen.