When the Constitutional Convention ended in Philadelphia back in 1787, Benjamin Franklin was asked “What have you given us, a monarchy or a republic?” Benjamin Franklin responded by saying “We have given you a republic, if you can keep it.”
This is why it is important to remember that the right of citizens to participate in our government is something that many people throughout the world envy and why we should never take that responsibility for granted.
In recent years, we have witnessed elections won or lost by about a dozen votes-every vote matters. In a more recent race, when all the ballots were counted only 9 votes separated the candidates. So please don’t even let anyone tell you that your vote doesn’t matter-it most certainly does.
Our representative republics very survival depends on people just like you informing themselves about the issues, the candidates, where they stand and deciding if they are worthy of your vote.
Your vote is your endorsement of their candidacy. Once elected, if these officials do not accomplish the things you elected them to do, it is your right to award your vote to another candidate during the next election cycle. In some cases, public officials have been subject to a recall election and been removed from office by the voters exercising their rights at the ballot box.
For over 230 years, the United States has stood as an example to the world in self-government and our elections have become the gold-standard for every other country that strives for a representative form of government.
This is why Delegate DeSteph encourages everyone who is eligible to exercise their right to become involved in the election process, educate yourself about the candidates standing for election, work for the candidates you support and make your voice heard on election day.
No one should vote a certain way just because its what everyone else is doing or how their parents voted-Delegate DeSteph believes that you should take the time to inform yourself of the major issues at stake, you should also vote to express your opinions, your ideas and what you think would make your city, town, county, state or country a better place for all.
If you are a Virginia Beach resident, Delegate DeSteph encourages you to visit the Virginia Beach Voter Registrars Office online. There is a wealth of good information about voting in Virginia Beach as well as many other resources such as polling locations, election results and insight into our election process.