It seems just like yesterday we were urging people to go to the polls in the 2018 general election and vote for the candidates of their choice in federal, state and local races.
We applauded those who went to the polls last year and voted. Even if their candidate or candidates didn’t win, we are still proud of voters because they exercised their constitutional duty by being a part of the election process. Those who didn’t vote last year, as we’ve stated in previous editorials, don’t really have a right to complain about the outcome of the election because they made a deliberate choice not to participate.
It is beyond upsetting each election cycle to see the percentage of registered voters in Kentucky who don’t vote in primaries and general elections. We always hope participation will increase, but it seldom ever comes to fruition.
On Tuesday, the primary election cycle ended. Unfortunately, it once again inspired low voter turnout across the state.
But first, we would like to congratulate incumbent Gov. Matt Bevin, who defeated several Republican opponents, including his main opponent, state Rep. Robert Goforth, to win his party’s nomination to take on the Democratic nominee in the fall. On the Democratic side, we congratulate state Attorney General Andy Beshear for securing his party’s nomination to face Bevin in the fall. Beshear held off former state auditor Adam Edelen and particularly state Rep. Rocky Adkins, who gave Beshear a tough challenge, with the outcome unclear until vote totals came in from Louisville and western Kentucky as Tuesday night wore on.
There were several other statewide offices in this primary, such as secretary of state, state treasurer, attorney general and agriculture commissioner. We wish the victors in these races all the best in the general election in November.
We say to all who ran for their party’s nomination in each race that we are proud of them for putting their hat in the ring and offering their visions on how to make this state better. While most fell short, they should be credited with traveling around the state, meeting the voters and putting themselves and their families into the public eye. They deserve credit, because campaigning puts heavy demands on family and personal time.
We also hope to see nothing but positive campaigning this fall. While we know this is unlikely to happen, especially in what is expected to be an intense governor’s race, we can at least hope that the mud-throwing is kept to a minimum.
Now, as for statewide voter turnout, which was predicted by the secretary of state’s office to be less than 15 percent, but proved to be just short of 20 percent. This number, even though it beat the prediction, is simply unacceptable. We can’t find one reason why more people couldn’t have gotten out Tuesday and voted their conscience.
When there is so much riding on this year’s election in all of the offices, we can’t believe people cared so little about exercising a precious right.
It’s a sad reality that hopefully will change by November in the general election.