Make Your Voice Heard: VOTE! | Don Brunell

Elections are always important, but the stakes are particularly high this year with our economy stuck in neutral and threatening to slip into reverse.

 

Elections are always important, but the stakes are particularly high this year with our economy stuck in neutral and threatening to slip into reverse.

The economy will move forward only when employers feel confident enough to begin hiring. The choices voters make this November will either strengthen or weaken employer confidence.

When you mark your ballot, ask yourself, “Will my vote help create real private-sector jobs for me and my family? Will my vote put us on the path to reducing our crushing federal debt? Will my vote begin to reverse years of high unemployment?”

This will be a pivotal election and both camps will have their get-out-the-vote efforts. But voting is something Americans often take for granted. That is in stark contrast to the people of Iraq who braved death threats in 2005 to vote in their first free election.

By comparison, Americans have it easy. Perhaps too easy. Having the right to vote isn’t enough — we have to use it!

Washington citizens are more active than most when it comes to voting. But even here, the number of people voting in major elections has dwindled over time.

According to the Secretary of State’s office, back in 1952 nearly 91 percent of eligible adults in Washington were registered to vote, and 80 percent of them went to the polls.

In 2008, only 72 percent of eligible adults were registered. Even though a high percentage of them voted, the lower number of registered voters meant that only six out of ten eligible people voted.

What does that mean?

It means that four of every 10 adults let other people make decisions for them. They threw away the right to decide who leads their state and nation and what direction we take.

This is a big election year in Washington state. In addition to the governor’s race between Democrat Jay Inslee and Republican Rob McKenna, Secretary of State Sam Reed and Auditor Brian Sonntag are both retiring this year.

Initiative 1185 will let voters decide — again — if they want to require a two-thirds majority vote of the Legislature to increase taxes. Hopefully, the answer will be “yes” — again.

Initiative 1240 would allow charter public schools in Washington, one of only nine states without that option. Voters should say yes to this opportunity to provide parents with more choices for their children’s education.

But however you vote . . . vote!

In spite of everything, some folks believe they can’t make a difference. Not true.

Remember the 2004 Washington governor’s race? It was the closest political race in U.S. history.Republican Dino Rossi was declared the winner in the initial automated count and again in the automated recount. It wasn’t until after the second recount done by hand that Democrat Christine Gregoire was declared the winner by 129 votes.

The only way to guarantee you don’t make a difference is to not vote. And, as the old timers say, if you don’t vote, you can’t complain.

Monday, Oct. 8 is the last day to update your registration or register online or through the mail, and Oct. 29 is the deadline to register in person.

General Election ballots will be mailed out to registered voters on Oct. 19. Your completed ballot must be postmarked no later than Election Day.  (Remember to sign it.)

If you’re dropping off your ballot in person, you must deposit it in a designated ballot drop box or at your county elections office by 8 p.m. on Election Day. Contact the Secretary of State’s office or your county elections office for assistance.

Voting is easier — and more important —than ever these days. Vote.

 

More in News

New utility included in Enumclaw budget; final vote set for Nov. 27

Significant progress has been made on crafting a 2018 Enumclaw budget, a document that could forever change the way the city collects and disperses certain funds. The plan now under way would see creation of a stormwater utility probably by August of the coming year.

Proposed recycling center sparks environmental fears

A proposed material processing facility outside of Enumclaw has some local conservationists worried about how it may affect the Green River and other natural environments. “The location of this, next to this natural area, just is not right. It doesn’t make sense to us at all, for a variety of reasons,” said Bernie McKinney, president of the Green River Coalition, a non-profit preservationist group.

Mobile Impaired Driving Unit hitting the streets this holiday weekend

The MIDU is a self-contained 36 foot motorhome that has been retrofitted as a mobile DUI processing center and incident command post.

Two Enumclaw volunteers honored for work at library

Two members of the Enumclaw Friends of the Library were honored during the recent Friends’ Day, an annual celebration of King County Library System volunteers.

Abigail Hill, 19, is crowned Miss Washington by the 2017 title winner, Alex Carlson-Helo. Photo courtesy Jerry and Lois Photography
Local Miss Washington prepares for national stage

That’s right — Enumclaw is competing in Miss U.S.A. Abigail Hill, the city’s newest star, was recently crowned Miss Washington , clearing the way for her to compete nationally in the spring.

Beyond the Borders now travels from Sumner to Bonney Lake

Come December, it’ll be easier for youth, seniors, people with disabilities or low-income to travel between Sumner and Bonney Lake.

Early start to Crystal ski season

The outdoor season has officially greeted those heading uphill, with snow deep enough to enjoy.

Suspect faces possible ‘third strike’ after alleged car chase, kidnapping

A suspect with a long criminal history finds himself in “third strike” jeopardy, the result of an alleged robbery in Enumclaw and ensuing car chase out of town.

Why now is a good time for a flu shot | Public Health Insider

With the holidays drawing near, many of us look forward to travel or seeing family and friends. And just as our schedules get busier, it’s also the time of year when the flu starts to circulate. We turned to Libby Page, manager of our immunizations program, to get the scoop on flu vaccine.

Election 2017: Change in Enumclaw; Buckley mayor race close

The 2017 general election is over, and although the results are still two weeks from being certified, many candidates are in the clear to take up their elected positions come winter.

Get your fill of winter activities on Mount Rainier

Mount Rainier’s landscape undergoes a dramatic transformation in winter.