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Off-year elections like 2019 typically are low-turnout ones. Compared to presidential-year elections, most voters decide to stay home because they aren’t interested in state and local politics.

This is most unfortunate, as off-year elections have long-lasting implications, far more important to our everyday lives than who wins the presidency.

The decisions we make today will have a lasting impact on the future of Culpeper. With the Nov. 5 election around the corner, voters will have a chance to give the county and town a path forward. In our representative democracy, the future truly is in the hands of the people. The uniqueness of Culpeper hangs in the balance.

This election is also much bigger than Culpeper. The future direction of the commonwealth also hangs in the balance. Both chambers of the General Assembly are held by a one-vote Republican majority.

Two races in Culpeper may determine if we have checks and balances between the governor and people’s house. State Sen. Bryce Reeves and Del. Nick Freitas are both seeking reelection in Culpeper County, and we need them to return to Richmond as our representatives to stave off the ludicrous legislation the Democrats want to bring to Virginia.

If Democrats gain control of the General Assembly, Virginia will have one-party rule. This means we will see restrictions on law-abiding gun owners, plastic-bag bans, abortion up until birth, the repeal of our right-to-work law, higher taxes on small businesses, and increased regulations on farmers and private property owners. To get a real picture of what Virginia will look like, see the disaster of the Democrats’ one-party rule in California and ask yourself if that is what we want in Virginia.

Culpeper is a Republican county. We know this because Republican candidates for president and governor win Culpeper County with huge margins. With the absence of a president and a governor at the top of the ticket, it is vital for Republicans not to monkey around with voting for candidates who are Democrats or even independents on this year’s ballots. We need to send a strong message to the rest of the state that Culpeper cares about conservative ideas.

State and local Republican candidates are committed to working together for the people of Culpeper. For the first time in its history, this year the Republican party in Culpeper is offering a full ticket for Senate, delegate, sheriff, commonwealth’s attorney, treasurer, Board of Supervisors and Town Council. Our Republican candidates are serious about bringing workable ideas and solutions to the table for the benefit of all residents in our county.

One thing is certain: Culpeper will play a vital role in the direction of the commonwealth in November. Republicans, don’t sit out this election. Please get to the polls on Nov. 5, and bring your friends. Be sure to stop at the Republican canopy at your polling location to get the slate of Republican candidates you can take with you into the polls.

Every vote counts. Every vote for Republicans is a vote for our liberty and security today and for our children tomorrow.

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Jon Russell is serving his second term on the Culpeper Town Council, and chairs the Culpeper County Republican Committee. His columns represent his personal views.

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