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Opinion: Why the most important election races aren’t getting enough attention

These races might not be making the headlines, but they will have the biggest impact on your community

SHARE Opinion: Why the most important election races aren’t getting enough attention
A woman reaches out of a car window to drop a ballot into a Salt Lake County ballot box.

Julia Houser inserts her ballot into a secure ballot drop box at the Salt Lake County Government Center in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, June 28, 2022.

Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

Down ballot races are where the action is. Bottom-up is a good way to look at your ballot. The races at the bottom of the ballot are the ones that will most affect your day-to-day life.

Local leaders enact laws affecting your neighborhood economy, environment, public health, police department, school system and libraries. Winners of down ballot races are the ones who control the resources in your immediate community. Candidates at the bottom of your ballot races can impact the redrawing of voting districts and make decisions about reproductive and LGBTQ+ policies.  

Down ballot races are often low profile compared to the ones listed in a higher place on the ballot. While the top spots get all the headlines, the candidates in your local elections deserve the most scrutiny. 

Learning about local races requires some research. Go to Ballotpedia. There you can enter your address and see the candidates that will be making decisions about your everyday life. Then do your own research before you check a name on your ballot. You have choices. You have alternatives. Know which candidates represent your values before you cast your ballot.

Remember: bottom-up!

Luanne Hudson