Primary voting is important

To the editor,

Candidate filing for the 2022 Idaho elections ended Friday, March 11, at 5 o’clock. As I looked at the various elections for legislative races, it struck me the contest in many elections will be determined May 17. That is actually the 2022 primary election date in Idaho, but in 17 of 35 Idaho Senate races and 32 of 105 Idaho House races, only Republican candidates have put their hat in the ring. There are no candidates in those contests for the Democratic, Independent, or Libertarian parties. In those elections, when the primary vote counting is finished, the winner will have no opposition in November, so essentially, the election will be decided. And, in those elections, only voters registered as Republicans will be allowed to vote.

Over the years, I have heard many people say they don’t bother voting in primary elections. They seem to reason the November election is enough to worry about and they just don’t have time to decide who to vote for in May, or even if they will vote in the primary. If you live in one of the 49 Idaho legislative district contests with only one party represented, waiting until November to vote means you won’t get to make a choice this year.

Isn’t it worth your time to watch those TV ads, listen to the radio commercials, read the newspaper ads and columns and those flyers in the mail, attend the candidate forums to determine which candidates best represent your viewpoints and philosophy, and then go to the polling location May 17 and vote? If you don’t, who will choose your elected representative for you?

Even in races with only Republican candidates, there are sometimes wide differences in experience, philosophy, and attitude. I urge voters to first determine which legislative district they are in and make sure they are registered. The mandated decennial redistricting moved many district boundary lines. Then, find out the names of the candidates filing for office. Finally, do a little research over the next few weeks and determine the candidate you want to support.

It’s your future, and the future of your children and grandchildren, you are voting for every election.

Rick Cheatum

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