This Tuesday, September 1, is primary election day in Massachusetts for both national and state legislative offices.
Primary elections in Massachusetts typically are of little or no consequence because of the overwhelming Democratic voting enrollment and because most Democrats run unopposed.
However, this year’s primary election is different because of the hotly-contested U.S. Senate race between incumbent Ed Markey and Congressman Joseph Kennedy that will draw a larger-than-usual turnout for a primary.
In addition, there are two truly unique and important aspects to Tuesday’s election.
This will be the first election in which we will be voting either early, by mail, or in person amidst the Covid-19 pandemic. Tuesday’s primary will be a good test of the ability of Massachusetts’ election officials to conduct an election under these difficult circumstances and thus will serve as excellent preparation, both for voters and officials alike, for the upcoming November Presidential election.
It is important that all of us participate in the democratic process on or before Tuesday so that both we and our election officials can be as knowledgeable as possible about the procedures that we will need to follow in November to ensure a successful final election.
In addition, thanks to the chaos that reigns throughout the country (for many reasons), it is not an understatement to say that the elections to be held this year — both the primaries and the final — have taken on more significance than any in our nation’s history.
The Presidential elections of 1860 (prior to the start of the Civil War) and 1932 (when we were in the midst of the Great Depression) arguably were the most consequential elections since our founding, but the 2020 election cycle will be even more significant than both of those.
The pundits talk about the existential threat being posed to our democracy and institutions because of the situation in the White House. However, regardless of what one thinks of the current policies emanating from Washington, what undeniably is true is that our democracy certainly will come to an end if we fail to exercise the most important right we have as Americans — the right to vote.
There is no greater threat to America’s survival than our own apathy. A strong voter turnout in every election, including the primaries, will send the clearest possible message to our political leaders that we care about the future direction of our country. We urge all of our readers to be sure to vote in the primary election — it is more important than ever.