Voters can learn firsthand about candidates at forums

“My Call” by Bill Milligan

By Bill Milligan

An informed electorate is among the most important safeguard of democracy and misappropriation of tax dollars, yet something we see far too little of in St. Louis.

An informed electorate would never tolerate the kind of government that fails at everything it attempts, but that’s the kind of government that prevails in St. Louis.

Democrats have won every election in decades in the city of St. Louis, and they keep getting elected.

In fact, there is a greater likelihood we’ll find life on Mars than there is we’ll find life in the Republican Party in St. Louis.

Is it because the people in St. Louis want to fail? Why would people continue to back a party that has run off more than half its residents in the past 30 years?

Clearly the city will continue to decline until its voters start electing good candidates — whether they be Republicans or Democrats.

In the the next few weeks, this newspaper will focus on contested races in the Tuesday, Aug. 3, primary, with the goal of providing our readers the comprehensive and in-depth coverage they need to make intelligent and informed choices at the polls.

We also will make endorsements in local races.

But we also encourage readers to seek out the candidates and ask them questions about issues that concern you.

The same goes for ballot propositions. Don’t hesitate to call the officials who placed those propositions on the ballot and learn firsthand why those they voted to place an issue on the ballot.

But the best way to be an informed voter is to listen to the candidates themselves.

That’s why this newspaper and the League of Women Voters has, for the past 15 years, sponsored impartial candidate forums to give voters the chance to find out for themselves about the candidates.

This newspaper will co-sponsor a forum with the league on July 20 in Crestwood, and the league will sponsor forums on July 19, July 21 and July 26.

Details of those forums are featured on Page 3A.

Make plans to attend these forums to get firsthand information on important local issues facing voters today.

Be an informed voter and a good citizen.