The election period is in full swing, and we are very impressed with the high number of voters who turned out for the first day of early voting.
Despite having to travel to Dobson, the only location offering early voting until Oct. 29 when Mount Airy and Elkin will have open sites, 643 Surry County registered voters went to the polls to cast their ballots Thursday.
That number is just 21 voters shy of the smallest Surry County precinct, Dobson #2, which had 664 registered voters as of Oct. 15.
The high turnout locally is a good sign that voters in the county think it’s important to take part in the democratic process and voice their opinions on who should be in office making decisions that affect our lives — locally, statewide and nationally.
According to county Board of Elections Director Susan Jarrell, in 2008, the last presidential election, 38 percent of Surry County voters who cast ballots did so during early voting, so it is no surprise that early voting will be popular this time around as well.
But no one, including the Board of Elections staff, expected the huge voter turnout that occurred on the first day of voting, which was lined up at the door before the poll opened Thursday morning.
We are shocked and pleased at the numbers reported Thursday, and we hope voter turnout during this election period will continue to remain high, because one of the most important things we can do as Americans — maybe the most important — is to cast our ballots and make our opinions known.