Vote in today's primaries

Much of the interest and the attention of voters this year has been captured by the presidential campaign. But the real action is at your local precinct today.

The pundits and the national press have been focused on the death throes of Hillary Clinton's primary campaign. And that, along with the ascendancy of Barack Obama and John McCain, has been dramatic and exciting.

But today's primaries for state and county races are likely to have a larger and longer lasting impact of the lives of local residents and their neighbors than whatever happens at the national level. And in a variety of local primaries with candidates from only one party competing, the outcome of today's vote will, in all likelihood, determine the winner.

During a recent hectic round of endorsement interviews by members of The Herald's editorial board, numerous candidates said they feared that despite all the time they have spent putting out signs, going door-to-door to meet voters, going to forums and get-togethers, making phone calls and passing out campaign literature, not enough voters were paying attention. And the candidates worried that few voters would show up at the polls today.

We hope voters prove those fears unjustified. We hope they have been paying attention and that they will take the time to cast a ballot today.

Consider the Republican primary for the District 48 seat in the state House of Representatives. No Democrats filed to run, so the winner of the two-candidate race will assume the seat, which represents much of Fort Mill, Lake Wylie, Tega Cay and a portion of Rock Hill. This is one of the most populous and fastest-growing districts in the state, and one that includes thousands of York County residents.

Consider the races for the District 2, District 5 and District 6 seats on the York County Council. Here, again, no Democrats are running and today's vote will determine who will serve on the council from those districts for the next two years.

In Chester County, today's vote will determine the coroner's race, the District 4 County Council race and, barring a runoff, the hotly contested sheriff's race.

In the presidential campaign, your vote will be one of millions. Today, it could be the vote that determines who wins in a tight race, and turnout is likely to be the key to victory for any winning candidate.

So, yes, this is an important election for all those who care about the future of our county and our state. And, yes, your vote can make a difference.

Please take the time to make an informed decision and go to the polls today.