Now that the election results are officially certified in Fresno County, election time is over … for the time being. I am going to miss the creative marketing campaigns to entice me to vote for a particular candidate or cause. No more commercials of an adult male with gray hair walking in shiny red shoes. No more of a candidate standing next to an empty canal blaming the incumbent for the area’s water woes. No more signs near my house of a school board candidate with a shadow of a soldier recommending that I vote for him.
Soon the cycle will start over again in a much smaller way. A special election has been scheduled for March 5th to fill the seat on the Fresno County Board of Supervisors vacated by Andreas Borgeas, who was elected to the California State Senate. The seat covers much of north Fresno and parts of Clovis. The City of Clovis is also scheduled to have an election for City Council seats. Residents of those areas be ready and get out to vote!
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I voted this past election and make it a priority to take part in every election. Perhaps it is because when I was a child, I remember going to my grandpa’s house during election time to find him sitting on his kitchen table reading voter material. Voting was important for him. In his broken English he would slowly read each page of the material. As I got older and became voting age, we’d talk about the candidates and issues. The things he would look for in a candidate were whether they cared about people, whether they were pro-business and whether they supported legislation that would recognize the Armenian Genocide.
At first glance, it is easy to dismiss the latter. But let’s look closer. It takes guts for someone to come out against current presidents of the United States and the State Department and do what is right — point the finger at the wrongs committed by the Ottoman Turkish government. In essence, candidates who are willing to recognize and condemn this past action are courageous and maybe that is part of the reason grandpa put so much weight on the issue.
This past election I noticed that more people got out to vote. Since I work in downtown Fresno, I take lunchtime walks to get away from the office for a while. The goals of these walks are: to observe what is going on in downtown, step away from work for a while, and finally, get some much needed exercise. With three little kids at home, it is hard to sneak off to the gym.
During election day I walked past the election’s office. Staff were doing a wonderful job keeping things organized even though there were a lot of people waiting to vote. It was an incredible sight. Hopefully, the trend continuous. Because I was truly interested in why people voted this election, I did what any person with social media would do; I asked my Facebook friends. Here are the reasons that people voted:
▪ The current administration (for and against)
▪ Civic duty
▪ The privilege that many fought and died for us to have
▪ Having a say in government
▪ Things they care about being on the ballot
▪ Each vote counts
▪ Together we can change how things are done
▪ Belief in our future
I agree with these reasons. Each vote does count. Sure, in national and state elections, where the margin of victory is thousands of votes, it is tough to see how each vote makes a difference. As far as local races, we see how each vote can determine the winning candidate. The County Clerk’s Office is very good about releasing election results for Fresno County. Here is the website with results: https://www.co.fresno.ca.us/departments/county-clerk-registrar-of-voters/election-information/election-results/2018-november-general-election-results
Each vote does count. If you still don’t believe that, ask the several candidates who won and lost by a few votes. They’ll tell you that each vote does in fact count.
Sevag Tateosian is host and producer of Central Valley Ledger on 90.7 FM KFSR Fresno and CMAC Comcast 93 and AT&T 99.