Wane A. Hailes
For eighteen years, I have implored you to understand that all politics are local. While presidential elections often get more media attention and public interest, local elections are far more impactful in our daily lives.
All you need to do is think back over this past year. Local government officials made vital decisions affecting our children’s education, utilities, law enforcement, zoning and construction, local taxes, public spaces, and more. The policies and actions of our city council, Judges, and school board members often have practical and immediate effects on our daily lives as residents in Muscogee County.
Participating in local elections allows us to choose leaders who will represent our interests and advocate for our concerns more personally. Local elected officials are closely integrated with the communities they serve and should respond more directly to constituents’ concerns.
One of the fundamental principles of any democratic system is accountability. Our local officials are elected to serve the people right here in Muscogee County. We entrust them with the responsibility to represent the interests of our community, make beneficial decisions, and implement effective policies.
If they fail to perform their duties properly, or if they break the trust of their constituents, it is indeed the right of the voters to seek accountability and, if necessary, vote for a replacement. This process is essential for improving overall governance and ensuring that the community’s needs are met.
The upcoming 2024 election is the perfect time for voters to assess the performance of our current representatives and determine if they align with our expectations and values. Healthy democratic societies depend on engaged and informed citizens who hold their elected officials accountable and exercise their right to replace them when needed.
In summary, while both local and presidential elections are vital to the democratic process, the tangible effects of local elections on individuals’ lives cannot be overstated. Engaging and voting in local elections is an essential civic duty and a key method to having one’s voice heard in the community. In the following weeks, we will begin sharing information regarding the 2024 election and the importance of exercising your right to vote.