Editorial: Your vote always matters in Freeborn County

Published 8:02 pm Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Freeborn County politically has come to be known as a pivot county — a county that one year could vote red and the next year vote blue or vice versa.

We’ve seen it before with the District 27A House of Representatives seat, and we saw it in the 2016 election when 55 percent of voters supported now President Donald Trump, a Republican, while Democrat Hillary Clinton won 38 percent of the vote. That year Trump won a 17.24 percent margin of victory in the county.

For the two elections prior, Freeborn County voters supported Democratic President Barack Obama, with 56 percent of the vote in 2012 compared to 42 percent for Republican Mitt Romney. That year the local margin of victory was 14.11 percent for Obama.

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According to Ballotpedia, an online encyclopedia of American politics and elections, Freeborn County is one of 206 pivot counties across the country — and 19 across the state.

Since 1960, pivot counties in Minnesota have matched the national election results in almost 69 percent of presidential elections. In Freeborn County, the local results have matched national results 60 percent of the time.

What does this mean for Freeborn County?

Though we don’t have a presidential election this year, we do have several important state races, including the race for governor, two U.S. Senate seats, a U.S. House of Representative seat and a state representative seat.

And how our county votes in those races matter, too.

As we gear up for another election season, we ask that you take your vote seriously. Review the platforms of each of the candidates thoroughly and then follow through by selecting who you think would best represent the needs of our community and the state.

Every vote matters.