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Editorial October 30, 2008  RSS feed

EDITORIAL

What seems like the world's longest presidential campaign will come to an end on Tuesday, Nov. 4. That is Election Day and the polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

We urge our readers to come out and vote for the candidate of their choice without meddling in the way they make that decision. This newspaper has a policy of never endorsing any candidates.

For starters, we consider it arrogant to try to influence people on who should get their vote. What we do is cover civic meetings—including ones billed as Candidates Night programs—in the area and present the issues.

If elected officials or office-seeking candidates show up at these meetings, we present their views without any spin. This is the way we aim to assist readers in making an informed decision when election time comes.

Second, it is not the media's role to recommend a candidate for any office. If the media is doing the job of reporting, it will present the facts and let voters do the rest.

In truth, it is popular to report news that is heavily laced with opinion—whether conveyed by the words put into print or the voice inflections and facial expressions communicated electronically. Often, there is no telling where the news ends and the opinion begins.

We can only hope that on Tuesday, voters will rely on the one opinion that matters—their own—in making their choices in all the political races that will be decided.

Taking a look, some decisions will prove easier than others, though not for the reasons that one would expect.

In Queens, the voter gets to pick seven Supreme Court justices from a field of 18 candidates. As we have seen, many voters tend to cast such ballots along party lines.

There is an election for the Judge of the Civil Court- Countywide spots that is almost a joke. There are two people on the ballot—both in the same party—and the voter picks two candidates. Not much of a decision there.

Six Queens congressional districts have races. But one incumbent is running unopposed. Seven state senators are in the running and three are unopposed.

In the State Assembly, there are 18 seats and among them, 13 involve incumbents who are running unopposed. One of the unopposed was recently indicted and charged with accepting bribes. If convicted, will this former corrections officer run his office from the jailhouse?

There's only one race for a spot in the City Council and there are two candidates in the running. However, the Judge of the Civil Court-District election has only one candidate, so that is a moot point if ever there was one.

Even so, we still encourage everyone who is eligible to get out and vote. Those who can, but fail to do so will be turning their backs on their civic duty and surrendering their right to complain.

Make a choice—where possible—instead of letting someone else make it for you.