ViewPoint: Keep the excitement in politics - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

ViewPoint: Keep the excitement in politics

May 13, 2008

"Voter apathy" is a term we've heard for at least a generation. The low percentage of eligible voters who actually participate in the process is sometimes an embarrassment of our political system.

Will that change this election year? If the interest and excitement that we've seen in the Democrat nomination process can serve as a guide to the general election, it might.

While the Clinton and Obama camps have generated plenty of political heat, some say in a negative way, but their battle for the Democrat nomination for president has created an interest in the process we haven't seen in many years. 

Part of the reason is that voters see a chance to voice their displeasure with a sitting president, with very low approval ratings.

But Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are also making history as the first female and the first black candidate to receive the nomination of a major American political party for president.

That may serve to make women and black voters feel a sense of ownership of the system, they have not seen before. America has never had a president who wasn't a white man, but the Democrats have a very real chance of breaking that mold in 2008, and the demographic groups most like Clinton and Obama are obviously fired-up and dedicated to their candidates.

Whatever the reasons are that people have for participating fully in the election process, we applaud the fact that they are doing it! 

Too often people don't like where the country is headed, but too few people exercise the right that many people died for in times past, and perform the simple act of voting.

Wherever your enthusiasm for the 2008 elections came from, let's keep it alive, and make voting vital this year.