There’s a lot riding on Tuesday’s primary election.
Across the state, candidates have spent millions of dollars on advertisements and mailers. Countless signs dot local yards, busy intersections and rural fields. Candidates have put in untold hours traveling across the Cowboy State talking to voters, shaking hands and doing whatever they can to make their cases.
But all of it hinges on one key element: You, the voter.
All of the work, all of the hours and all of the campaigning will culminate Tuesday when voters across Wyoming head to the polls.
Unfortunately, many Park County residents haven’t shown up on election day in the past.
In the last primary election in August 2016, only 6,750 county residents cast ballots. When you consider that Park County was home to nearly 24,000 adults at the time, that means just 28 percent showed up to vote.
Here’s another way to frame that dismal statistic: Only one in four Park County adults bothered to vote in the last primary election.
We can do better, Park County.
If you haven’t registered to vote, that’s OK. Wyoming allows voters to register on the day of the election.
Just show up at your polling place on Tuesday, where you can register to vote and then cast your ballot. It really is that easy.
If you live in the Powell area, you’ll vote at the Park County Fairgrounds. Voters east of Powell in the Garland area will head to the Garland Community Church; those west of town in the Ralston area will vote at the Mountain View Clubhouse on Road 18. A complete list of polling places can be found at www.parkcounty.us/pcelections/pollingplaces.html. Polls open at 7 a.m. Tuesday and close that evening at 7 p.m.
If you’re not sure which candidates to vote for, take a moment in the next few days to read up on them. In the Tribune’s online election guide, we have coverage on all the contested races. The guide can be found on our website at www.powelltribune.com.
Your vote really does matter. In recent years, some local races came down to just a handful of votes.
Voters will determine who will advance to the general election in November, where our next city, county, state and congressional leaders ultimately will be elected.
In many races — such as the Park County Commission and Senate District 19 — the only candidates are Republicans, making it very likely that the winners in the primary election will be our elected leaders.
The voters who take time to show up will determine the outcomes of this election.
Though voting only takes a moment, the impact of local votes will last for years. Take the time Tuesday to exercise your right to vote.