OUR VIEW: Don’t forget about the District 1 election

Published 11:30 am Thursday, June 1, 2023

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Typically, special elections that occur outside the normal cycle have little participation.

And unfortunately, that’s the case for LaGrange’s District 1 council seat, where either Terry Stanford or Jim Arrington will be elected. Arrington, who is technically the incumbent, gave up the seat to run for mayor, lost and is now hoping to get it back.

And while the candidates will have their say at an election forum on June 8, we’re frankly concerned about how many people reading this will actually take five minutes, drive to a voting precinct and vote. Early voting is taking place at the Troup County Government Center.

On Tuesday, one of our staff members was the first person in the entire county to cast a ballot in this election. There was no line on the first day of early voting mid-morning Tuesday.

In the recent mayoral election, only 17% of registered voters participated. The SPLOST election, which is countywide and therefore had a larger pool of registered voters, was under 10%.

Everyone has an opinion on problems in our community and how dollars are spent. Yet, only a small fraction of residents actually care enough to vote.

And we admit that it’s head-scratching, especially when you consider both the fire chief and police chief positions were open when that election took place. 

This election is limited to District 1, so the voter pool is smaller than the mayor race, but we hope the turnout is much larger. 

Either Stanford or Arrington will be elected on June 20.  Do your homework on both candidates and take advantage of your right as an American to cast a ballot and have a say in the future of our city.