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EDITORIAL: Please, don't just vote — vote smart

| November 6, 2022 4:00 AM

It’s not enough to get out and vote.

To do so without knowing about the candidates you’re choosing to represent you is irresponsible. In fact, it’s as un-American as not voting at all.

Sorry if that hurts, but it’s the truth. Poor leaders are often selected because the electorate didn’t bother to do their homework.

They didn’t attend public forums, didn’t tune in for debates, didn’t read the profiles and news stories in the local paper.

Instead, they relied on the unreliable; sound bites and briefs distributed by vested interests. Painfully uninformative campaign signs. Or worst of all, the parenthetical abbreviations of party affiliation behind each candidate’s name on the ballot.

Like the bettor who selects a horse based on its name or the color of its blanket, sometimes you get lucky. But when it comes to electing your leaders, who wants to rely on luck when far better information is available?

Yes, it takes some work. But that’s the price of being an active, engaged American. Your ticket to a better life is punched in part by the sweat equity you put into choosing elected leaders.

Along those lines, we have some suggestions.

First and foremost, read The Press voters guide for Tuesday’s election. It was published on Oct. 18, but copies are available tomorrow and Tuesday, free of charge, at The Press, 215 N. Second St. in downtown Coeur d’Alene.

The voters guide can also be accessed, free of charge, by going to cdapress.com. At the top of the page, click on the button that says eEdition. Scroll down to Special Sections and you’ll see the guide. While most content on The Press website is reserved for subscribers, the voters guide has been placed in front of the paywall so anyone can access the valuable information inside it.

While your local newspaper is the best source by far for local political information, there are other robust online sources that do an outstanding job on state and national politics.

“True ignorance is not the absence of knowledge, but refusal to acquire it.” That’s the first thing you see when you go to votesmart.org — an effective weapon against political ignorance.

Ballotpedia.org also is full of important political information. Much of the information upon which The Press recommended a “No” vote on constitutional amendment SJR 102 came from Ballotpedia research.

Election Day is almost here. Our community’s, state’s and nation’s futures will all be impacted by the choices you make Tuesday.

Don’t just vote; cast informed ballots.

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