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Your vote is your voice

Ever wonder if your vote counts? Consider this: According to a recent column in the Washington Post, in the Presidential election of 2000, the “election result would have been reversed by the switch of 269 votes in Florida.” Had Al Gore won that state, he would have become President.

As you may know; the results of the upcoming elections will have a far-reaching impact on our lives. Issues facing Texas families every day will be influenced for years to come, which is why some folks are saying that this could be the single most important election of our time. How? At the national level, it’s possible that the next U.S. President will appoint two or three U.S. Supreme Court Justices. Our next President will also have an affect on issues ranging from our right to have access to the courts, to regulating insurance companies, national security and health care.

Although most of the advertisements and media attention will be focused on the presidential election, at the state-wide level, the judges and state legislators elected this November will be making decisions that directly affect you and your family. For example, there are many lobbyists and special interest groups who are working hard to curb your Constitutional right to avail yourself of the civil justice system if you or a loved one has been injured. During the last legislative session, laws were passed that make it much more difficult, and sometimes impossible, for Texans to hold careless homebuilders, negligent doctors, and unscrupulous insurance companies responsible for their actions.

Voting in local elections is as important as voting in the presidential election. When deciding who to vote for, you should choose candidates who share your values and views about the issues that affect you and your family the most. Your local news media, friends, family members and community leaders can provide information on the candidates, their opinions, and their leadership abilities.

Your vote is your voice. The importance of registering and voting has never been more apparent. We’ve always known that every vote counts, but the last Presidential election hammered that point home. Special interest groups, like the insurance lobby, use their money as their voice. Groups like these have unprecedented access to elected officials. While most of us don’t have millions of dollars to seek influence with legislators, we DO have power. Through our votes, we can elect individuals who are concerned with making sure average Texas families are protected and have access to health care, a good education, and security.

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