Columnists

Whatever You Do Today, Vote . . . Please

A friend of mine used to be the mayor in Seymour. He went on to serve a decade or so in the Indiana House. He was a Democrat. I’m not. We used to have some great discussions.

One day we were talking about voting and he shared this with me. On Election Day, your friends may or may not get to the polls to vote for you. It’ll depend on if they remember, if they have time, if something else doesn’t come up, if they can find a parking space, if the line isn’t too long . . . but rest assured that your enemies will get up off their death bed in a driving snow storm to vote against you.

I’m not sure, but truer words may never have been spoken.

So today, go vote against someone . . . vote for someone . . . whatever works best for you, but just vote.

We had a stretch from the late ‘80s to the early 2000s where only about half of us voted. In 1996, only 49 percent of voting age Americans cast a ballot – of course that presidential race featured Bill Clinton and Bob Dole . . . who could blame us?

But seriously folks.

The good news is that voting turnout in 2012 was about 54 percent, up a tick in 2016 and then way up in the 60s in 2020. (I think my friend’s description from above had an awful lot to do with that one.)

Of course, those are all presidential years and we know that mid-terms generate far less interest. Typically, well less than half of us vote.

That’s a shame.

There’s a guy on the radio named Rob Kendall who says we get the government we deserve. It’s a good point. If We The People do our homework and look beyond the stupid yard signs and 30-second sound bites and find out who these candidates really are, then we will vote wisely and we will deserve better. If We The People vote straight-party ticket, then we’ll get what we deserve. And if We The People choose to sit back today and not cast our ballot, we’ll get exactly what we deserve.

Two-thirds of those scenarios end up with more of the same.

It’s easy to understand not voting today. There aren’t that many contested races and the allure of a presidential contest is still two years off. But the truth is we have some very interesting school board races. Can you recall any point in your life where what is being taught in our schools has been talked about so much? Think that’s not important? Really?

And like the annoying announcer says, but that’s not all. We’ve actually got a few other races of interest, locally and at the state level.

Ultimately, how you vote . . . how much research you do, where your loyalties lie, what you want to accomplish . . . is entirely your call. That’s the great thing about our republic. We each have a say. It’s a process. It’s our process. Do your part.

Two cents, which is about how much Timmons said his columns are worth, appears periodically on Thursdays in The Times. Timmons is the chief executive officer of Sagamore News Media, the company that owns The Noblesville Times. He is also a proud Noblesville High School graduate and can be contacted at ttimmons@thetimes24-7.com.