By The Index · Wednesday, October 24, 2012
The third and final presidential debate showed us two exemplary candidates. We saw smart, experienced people, educated on the issues, putting forward their divergent ideas on what they think should be in store for the next four years.

It was a respectful debate, insightful even. And after more than a decade of shallow partisanship and political parties catering to the lowest common denominator, this debate made us proud to live in a country that puts forward candidates like President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.

No doubt many of us have already made our decision, in fact many of you have probably already voted. To those that have not: Please take the time to do your duty.

This election season may not seem as exciting as the contest four years ago, but the two paths proposed by our presidential candidates are quite different and will have severe consequences for those of opposing ideologies.

Further down the ballot the issues may not be as wide ranging, but the consequences are more apparent and the people we elect to these offices will have a direct impact on how we live our daily lives. To simply say: “If you don’t vote you can’t complain,” grossly oversimplifies the magnitude of our decisions.

Women’s rights and the powers of religious organizations in our society will both change one way or the other no matter who is elected. Continued slow economic growth versus gambling with our tax structure for a possibly quicker resurgence is something candidates down to the county level are affecting. Who you vote for will decide what happens.

We want you take your responsibility seriously. This week we have interviews with a few local candidates for office in the paper. Hopefully these stories will give you some insight into their characters. Read the stories, visit the webpages of the candidates, educate yourself on their issues, and finally, go vote.

We’re not going to tell you who to vote for, or which candidate is more likely to keep his or her promises. In an area as diverse as ours, the wants and needs of our community can be conflicting and what is in your best interest might not be the same as your neighbors.

Just remember, there are vastly different ideas being put forth on both sides of the ballot, and if you don’t vote you probably won’t like the way it turns out.
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