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OUR VIEW: Primary season is upon us

For Georgia voters, Election Day has come and gone, but before you know it, Alabama voters will be heading to the polls for the 2020 primary.

The 2020 primary is scheduled for March 3 and candidate qualifying ended this past week. There are several notable seats on the ballot and knowing the candidates and getting out to vote is critical to the future of our community.

In today’s edition, we identified all the candidates who have qualified for the upcoming primary. March may seem like it’s really far away, but when you consider that Christmas is only six weeks out, it’s easy to remember how fast time flies.

Now is the time to start learning about each of these candidates so an informed opinion can be made. More importantly, make sure you are registered to vote so you can cast your ballot when the time comes.

The first step for those that are not yet registered is to register. In Alabama, the registration deadlines for the March primary are Feb. 14 for hand-delivered registration, registrations sent in by mail must be postmarked by Feb. 15 and online registration closes Feb. 17.

Every vote matters, and if you don’t believe that, look at what just took place in West Point.

In West Point’s council election, three council seats were up for grabs and roughly a quarter of the registered voters took part. That means one-fourth of the registered voters in that election decided who gets to represent all of West Point.

Wiky Gladden missed a council seat by 12 votes.

It’s common for voter turnout to be low in non-governor or presidential elections, which is a shame because local officials make important decisions that impact our everyday lives. Obviously, many of us have November 2020 circled on our calendar due to the presidential race, but these primary races are extremely important.

Chambers County can make a strong statement by getting out to vote in record numbers to show our local leaders how much they care about the future of our community.

Start now, register to vote, study the candidates and know the issues that mean the most to you. Now is the time to do your homework, so that in March you can head to the polls as an informed voter.