Voting should be priority

All of Blair County’s registered Republicans and Democrats should exercise their duty to vote in today’s primary election.

With the national political situation so mired in uncertainty in this midterm election year, the eyes of the nation will be on Pennsylvania throughout today, especially this evening as balloting results become available.

It’s to be hoped that Blair voters of both parties will turn out en masse, to help provide a true picture of the mood of this state, even though Blair Democrats have only one major office for which to make a selection — lieutenant governor.

Nevertheless, voters of that party (like Republicans) have the right to make write-in picks when they cast their ballots, negating the flimsy excuse that their votes won’t make a difference.

For Altoona area Democrats, the write-in option is particularly relevant, since that party doesn’t have a candidate on its ballots for the 79th District seat in the state House of Representatives.

It’s troubling that no Democrat has stepped forward in a bid for that seat, despite the GOP voter-registration lead in the district.

Voters of both parties need to keep in mind that this election is for nominating candidates to compete in the Nov. 6 general election.

For Blair Republicans today, making selections will be a formidable challenge, considering all of the capable individuals vying for nominations. Because of the number of candidates, only a few voters opting to stay home, rather than going to vote, could make the difference in who is nominated and who is sent packing.

No registered voter — Republican or Democrat — should risk waking up Wednesday morning sorry that he or she was “too busy” or too lazy to vote.

GOP voters have a field of eight candidates for the new 13th Congressional District seat, which is replacing the 9th District seat held currently by retiring U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster. Democrats have only one candidate seeking the seat.

There are two candidates vying for the GOP nod for the 30th District state Senate seat that is being vacated by Sen. John H. Eichelberger Jr., who is vying for the GOP’s 13th Congressional District nomination. One candidate is on Democrats’ ballots for the 30th District nomination.

There are two candidates for the statewide GOP U.S. Senate nomination, with the nominee apparently moving on to battle incumbent, unopposed Democrat Robert Casey Jr. in the fall.

The GOP has three candidates for that party’s gubernatorial nomination; the winner presumably will compete against incumbent, unopposed Democrat Tom Wolf in November.

On the GOP ballots, four candidates are competing for the lieutenant governor nomination; five Democrats, including incumbent Mike Stack, are seeking that party’s nod.

While Democrats have one candidate for the 80th District state House seat, which encompasses most of Blair County outside Altoona, two candidates are seeking the GOP nomination.

And, back to the Altoona area’s 79th District, where no Democrats are running, the Republican party has two candidates eyeing that nomination.

During today’s balloting, voters of both parties also will be making selections for memberships on their respective state and county party committees — memberships that should not be considered unimportant.

No one should embrace the foolish notion that today’s midterm balloting isn’t important.

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