It’s a sad thing that we’re happy when less than 50 percent of voters turn out

Published 6:27 pm Saturday, December 1, 2018

The election season is finally over. According to records from the Circuit Clerk’s office, 47.28 percent, or 15,073 of Warren County’s 31,881 registered voters cast ballots in the runoff. The total includes 248 affidavit ballots and 848 absentee ballots. Circuit Clerk Jan Hyland Daigre said the number does not include four ID ballots, which will not be counted until Wednesday.

In the Nov. 6 general election, according to the clerk’s final report, 61.65 percent, or more than about 19,500 of the county’s registered voters, went to the polls. That number included 1,500 absentee ballots, 400 affidavit ballots and four ID ballots.

“There was a lot of interest in that; we were expecting a good turnout,” Daigre said.

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“We were expecting a good return of voters because of so much interest statewide in this election,” Election Commission Sara Carlson Dionne said.

“I’m thankful that so many people came out to vote,” Dionne said. “The people are caring about the voting process. Our next election is in August with primaries for (state and county offices); a huge ballot for next year.”

While this general election involved a few local races and the big draw of a very contentious U.S. Senate race won by Republican Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith over Democrat Mike Espy, the August primary election will be even more important since it will have a more direct impact on Warren County.

Those registered voters who did go to the polls for the Nov. 6 general election and the ensuing runoff election last week should be commended. But the numbers also mean about half of the registered voters in the county did not bother to cast a vote.

If you are a registered voter we implore you to do your civic duty in August and go to the polls to make your voice heard.

And if you’re not a registered voter, please go to the Circuit Clerk’s office and get registered before the August primary.

This next election could make a huge difference in the direction and future of Warren County. Voting is your chance to help guide that direction and future.