2008-10-30 / Front Page

Voters To Pick New Leader November 4

Registered voters urged to have their say in historic election
By Chanin Rotz-Mountz STAFF WRITER

The clock is ticking down and history will be made in less than a week when registered voters head to the polls across the nation on November 4 to elect what will be either the country's first black president or female vice president. With so little time remaining and the future of the nation riding on this one decision, local party chairmen have only one suggestion for area residents - get out and vote!

"Local voters can and should remind their family and friends to vote on Tuesday, November 4, for the John McCain/Sarah Palin ticket," Fulton County GOP Chairman Mikeal Fix told the "News." "Even with all the media coverage, political ads, mailings and phone calls, there will be some people who will still forget to vote."

Meanwhile, longtime Democrat party Chairman Rheon Gelvin also urged voters to head out to the polls instead of sitting back, talking about it and not liking the end result. Looking ahead to the possible outcome in Fulton County, Gelvin forecasted a 50/50 split between voters during the presidential election.

In addition, race and gender, according to Gelvin, could be "somewhat" of a deciding factor for voters in Fulton County as well as in neighboring Franklin and Bedford counties.

"Statewide, I think we'll carry the state. I think the Democrats will fare better than what we have in prior elections, given the situations that have arisen during the last eight years," concluded Gelvin.

Fix countered that the Republicans still have a good chance with their candidates to pull off a win in Pennsylvania. "We need an overwhelming turnout in rural Pennsylvania, the 'T.' Gov. Rendell smust also think PA is still in play or he wouldn't have sent two memos to the Obama campaign to get him back in PA in these final days before the election," he said.

Locally, Fix said the election comes back to conservatism versus liberalism and predicts that Sen. McCain will be well received here in following Republican tradition. "Fulton County is a conservative county where people work for what they have. People here don't expect the government to hand to them what they aren't willing to work for on their own and aren't interested in having their income 'redistributed' like Obama wants to do. Thomas Jefferson is credited as saying, 'The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not,'" Fix stated.

In regard to racism in the county, Fix maintains it is not as widespread of an issue as many on the left side would want others to believe. Backing his statement, Fix related that in 2006, in the race for Pennsylvania's governor, 62 percent of the votes cast in Fulton County were for Lynn Swann, a black conservative.

Voter registration reports in Fulton County show 3,494 Democrats and 5,514 Republicans among the 9,824 registered to vote. The breakdown also shows 316 individuals registered as "others" and an additional 315 having "no affiliation." Furthermore, as of Friday, 369 absentee ballots have been issued to date, making the 2008 presidential election similar to the 358 absentee ballots issued four years ago.

As alternatives to Obama and McCain in Pennsylvania, voters can cast their vote in favor of Independents Ralph Nader and Matt Gonzalez or Libertarians Bob Barr and Wayne A. Root.

On the ticket for attorney general, Republican incumbent Tom Corbett will square off against Democratic contender John M. Morganelli and Marakay J. Rogers of the Lib- ertarian Party.

Democrat Jack Wagner is fending off competition from Chet Beiler (R) and Libertarian Betsy Summers for his seat as auditor general. Meanwhile, Robert McCord (D), Tom Ellis (R) and Berlie Etzel (L) have thrown their hats into the ring for state treasurer.

Democratic contender Tony Barr is again making a run for the 9th Congressional District seat occupied by Congressman Bill Shuster (R), while Rep. Dick L. Hess is unopposed for his seat in the 78th District of the General Assembly.

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