Vote ... but please not too early

Print Article

Last week, we wrote an editorial encouraging our readers to vote. This week, we are writing an editorial encouraging you to wait!

Absentee ballots were mailed out last week, and those ballots can now be used by any registered voter who wants to vote early for any reason.

That has proved to be a boon for certain political parties and certain candidates, whose well-organized campaigns can sometimes stockpile a huge number of votes prior to Election Day.

But unless you are a diehard voter who can’t be persuaded to change your mind no matter how much new information comes to light, voting early is really just a fool’s errand.

The period from May 13 to June 5 is an eternity in politics. Anything might happen to change your opinion about one or more of the candidates on the ballot, but if you have already voted, you have lost your chance to make an informed decision.

Case in point was the special election last year to find a replacement for Congressman Ryan Zinke after he was tapped to be secretary of the interior. Democrat Rob Quist was running a dogged campaign against Republican Greg Gianforte, but had an uphill battle getting traction in a state that gave President Trump a 20-point victory. But when news broke the day before the election that Gianforte had “body-slammed” a reporter, the race might well have been turned on its head.

Except, of course, that thousands of votes had already been cast — many of which might have flipped to Quist if the voters had waited till Election Day to make their choice. Gianforte won the race to the surprise of some observers.

There have been many other instances of late developments in election races that could and should be considered by voters — whether it’s learning about a local candidate’s bankruptcy or finding out that a U.S. Senate candidate considers herself a witch — but if you send in your ballot too early, you can’t make the most informed choice, and that hurts us all.

So, while we encourage all Montana citizens to do their civic duty and vote, we hope you will do so in a way that is most responsible. Vote early if you have no other choice, but vote as close to Election Day as possible in order to lessen the chance that you will regret your vote when it is counted.

ooo

To help our readers make an informed decision, the Daily Inter Lake is happy to include a special section inside today’s paper with candidates’ answers to questions posed by this newspaper and the Montana Free Press. Included are candidates in contested races for Flathead County commissioner, sheriff and justice of the peace, as well as U.S. Senate and U.S. House.

Print Article

Read More Editorial

New law helps empower the patient

January 13, 2019 at 6:00 am | Daily Inter Lake On Thursday we reported on a new federal law that took effect Jan. 1 requiring hospitals across the U.S. to publish online price lists for all of their medical services. Ultimately, the Centers for M...

Comments

Read More

You called, we have responded

January 10, 2019 at 6:00 am | Daily Inter Lake On Wednesday we rolled out a new configuration for a few of our more popular features ­­— and it wasn’t exactly met with rave reviews. Honestly, it went over like a lead balloon. Dozens of readers to...

Comments

Read More

Time to get to work in Helena

January 06, 2019 at 6:00 am | Daily Inter Lake The 66th session of the Montana Legislature convenes Jan. 7 in Helena. Over the course of the next four months, our elected representatives will be tasked with taking on a bevy of pressing issues: fu...

Comments

Read More

Flathead Valley welcomes 2019 with a thriving economy

December 31, 2018 at 6:00 am | Daily Inter Lake Here we are at the threshold of a brand new year. Some of us are ready to say good riddance to 2018; others will remember it as their best year ever. For the Flathead Valley economy, it’s been a ver...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

News: (406) 837-5131
Advertising: 406-758-4410
Bigfork Eagle
c/o Daily Inter Lake
PO Box 7610
Kalispell, MT 59904

©2019 Bigfork Eagle Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X