By Stephen Dafoe
I was sitting on my neighbour’s porch a couple weeks ago having a chat. Naturally, the topic of the election came up and I learned that she had never voted in her entire life. The conversation drifted on to other topics, but about a week ago I was back on the porch having a coffee and asked her what she was doing Oct. 18.
“Nothing, why?” she asked.
“Because I’m dragging you to the polls,” I said.
“Who will I vote for?” she asked.
“That’s up to you,” I said. “But you’ve got more than a week to educate yourself as to where the candidates stand on the issues that are important to you.”
I explained to my heretofore non-voting neighbour that municipal races were the most important races to vote in because it was the level of government closest to the people. Sure, the province or federal government may pay for roads and other infrastructure programs, but it is a strong municipal government that lobbies the MLAs and MPs to shift tax dollars to the municipalities.
I’m pleased to say my neighbour rose to the challenge and began reading the questions and answers posted here, as well as the other coverage of the election. She also started reading the literature presented at her door by those campaigning and thinking about what it all meant. She is now prepared to check the boxes she feels best represents her and her family’s interest as well as those of the community at large.
Whether in Morinville, Legal or parts of Sturgeon County, we have the opportunity to go to the polls tomorrow to elect or reject those seeking a seat on council or on our school boards. Let’s take that five or ten minutes sometime between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. to do what my neighbour is doing, casting a vote.
And while we ponder who we are voting for on Monday, let’s take an opportunity to sway a couple other people to make the effort to get out to the polls before they close at 8 p.m. on Monday night.