Thoughtful candidates and well-informed voters are vital to our democracy

  •   Brian Hill | Staff Photographer, 2021

 
The Daily Herald Editorial Board
Posted6/29/2022 1:00 AM
This editorial is the consensus opinon of the Daily Herald Editorial Board

Perhaps you were up late awaiting returns of hotly contested congressional primaries or from the often-nasty GOP fight to take on Gov. J.B. Pritzker in November.

Perhaps you are happy this morning with the results of some or all of the state, congressional and county races you care about.

 

Perhaps you are not.

Regardless, if you voted -- thank you. And if you ran -- thank you as well.

You see, democracy works only when candidates put themselves out there, when citizens pay careful attention to what they stand for and when voters fully participate.

Need proof? Just look at Friday's U.S. Supreme Court decision -- made possible by three of former President Donald Trump's appointees -- that overturned Roe v. Wade and changed the course of history.

If you or your friends are angry about that decision, you have to ask first: Did you vote? Or did you sit out the election because you were toobusy or less than thrilled with the candidates?

Voting matters. It mattered then. It matters now.

And it will matter big time in November.

If you skipped the primary for whatever reason, vow to do better in the fall.

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Register if you haven't already done so. Then start doing your homework on the candidates who will be facing off on Nov. 8 and will help determine the balance of power in our counties, our state and, yes, our nation.

Today, as some candidates celebrate primary election wins and others face losses, we take a moment to appreciate all of them for their willingness to run for public office -- and to accept the risks and obligations that come with it in our highly polarized society.

In our endorsements, we look at the candidates' positions, experience and ability to work with those who do not share their views.

We were dismayed, for example, by those who embraced and championed Trump's lies about the legitimacy 2020 election.

We were disappointed with those who tried to distort their opponents' stances to curry favor with one side of the political spectrum or another.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

But for all of them, we respect their right to run, and we thank them for giving us the choices that are so vital to our democracy.

Among those candidates this year were longtime veterans of the political process and newbies, including 21-year-old Arad Boxenbaum and 23-year-old Nabeela Syed -- both of whom ran for state rep at an age when many of their contemporaries can't be bothered to vote.

They understand that their voices matter.

And so does yours.

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