Voting Because It Matters

The more local an election is, the greater importance of your vote.

I know it's much sexier to vote in state-wide or national elections. It's easier to get worked up against the eternal struggle between Good and Evil, which is to say, Your Party versus the Other Party, as represented by two candidates on a national ballot. I get caught up in it as much as anyone. 

Unfortunately, your vote doesn't really matter very much in a national election. It just doesn't. Even in Wyoming, the state where individual votes have the greatest impact on an election (thanks, electoral college!), your vote is a literal drop in a bucket. Not only that, but the folks you're voting for only represent you in the most abstract of senses. You are not at the top of their mind when they're doing whatever Presidents or Senators do on a daily basis. There's too many of "you" and too few of "them" for any sort of real representation to occur.

At the other end of the spectrum, you have your local elections. Your city council members represent a few thousand people rather than tens of millions. The bond issues affect you and yours on a daily basis. The school board (you do elect your school board, don't you?) makes decisions that can affect your children's entire lives. These are very close, very immediate concerns.

The best part is that your vote can actually make a difference in these elections. In a national election, coming within a few million votes is considered a close race, whereas a few hundred votes can produce a landslide in a local election. 

I won't be writing about political things very often, but I'll make an exception today. I urge you, if you haven't already, please get out and vote today. It might actually make a difference.