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The Primaries - It Matters

The Primaries - It Matters

Author Ruwa Romman by

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A friend and I, an International Studies major and Politics major respectively, were discussing the primaries. He made a remark concerning the primaries in which he argued that voting did not matter, especially for someone voting as a Democrat since the Democratic nominees were pretty much set for this year's primaries in Georgia.

I looked at him confused. For someone who reminded me how important voting was, he seemed pretty cynical. I reminded him that even though the candidates we would be supporting would definitely win their party's nomination, having those numbers will help them in their campaigns later on. After all, it is all about the bigger picture. Candidates, whether Republican or Democrat, need to fund their campaigns. In order to bring in those donations, they must sell their stories. They must convince other people that their investment will be rewarded. No one wants to donate to a candidate who could never win. It would be like throwing money away. Even if it is the primaries and your candidate is guaranteed to win, there is still the actual race before the elections. Having those numbers provides tangible evidence to both donors and voters that their time and money is worth it. It is more convincing to present actual numbers than hypothetical ones.

Other than the fact that these primaries determine who will be running, they also bring in the correct candidates. As my friend informed me, in other countries the party chooses the nominees and people vote for them. We have the privilege to not only vote for our representatives but who we want to even consider voting for, as well.

Over the past few elections, our nominees have become less moderate because those who took the time to vote for them believed in their message so strongly that they took the time to vote. People began asking why we had so little moderates and why nothing was getting done. It was because the viable candidates who would normally be up for the vote never made it to elections. The more polarized people became the easier it was to get them to voting booths.

These local elections, arguably, are more important than national ones because they more directly affect people. They determine everything from how schools function and what funding they get to what kind of transportation is available to those living in the area. They affect our day to day life. Federal elections are important in terms of the bigger picture and future path, but local elections are what determine that bigger picture and future path on a more immediate level. These primaries are the first step. It's why I voted yesterday. To those wishing they now went out and voted, there is still a chance. Go out this coming November and vote for the candidate you believe would make the better difference. This year, Georgia seems to be a toss-up. There is no better time than now to take local elections more seriously.

Ruwa is a student at Oglethorpe University studying Politics and English. She is the current president of the Muslim Students Association there as well as Co-President of the Oglethorpe University Heifer International Club and a COEXIST Oglethorpe Committee Member. Check out her blog

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