Did you vote this time?

MOLLIE F. BELT | 5/29/2014, 5:15 p.m.
Only 2.01 percent of eligible voters in Dallas County voted in the May 27 primary runoff election.
Mollie Finch Belt, publisher of The Dallas Examiner

The Dallas Examiner

Only 2.01 percent of eligible voters in Dallas County voted in the May 27 primary runoff election.

In the Democratic primary runoff election in Dallas County there were several positions in the runoff including Felicia Petre and Tarsha Hardy for district clerk, Pauline Medrano and Bennie Brown for county treasurer, Erika Beltran and Andrea Hilburn for State Board of Education District 13, and Etta Mullins and Lisa Green for County Criminal Court No. 5.

Petre defeated Hardy, Medrano defeated Brown, Beltran defeated Hilburn, and Green defeated Mullins.

For U.S. senator in the Democratic primary runoff election, David Alameel defeated Kesha Rogers and will face John Cornyn in the November general election on Nov. 4.

In the Republican primary runoff election, Dan Patrick defeated David Dewhurst for lieutenant governor, after a long, ugly campaign battle. Dewhurst has served Texas as lieutenant governor for the past 12 years. Patrick will face Democratic candidate Leticia Van de Putte in the November election.

The primary runoff elections allow voters to decide who would represent their party during the general elections. Residents also had the option of voting between May 19 and May 23 to vote early. If you’re registered to vote, no one can stop you from voting … but you.

In the upper right hand corner of The Dallas Examiner website, found at http://www.dallasexaminer.com, is the Voter Roll Call. You can enter any registered voter in Dallas County and see if they voted in elections. We will be updating the website next month to include voting activity in the primary elections on March 4 and runoff election on May 27. We offer the Voter Roll Call as an opportunity for you to see if your friends, neighbors, coworkers, teachers, pastors, community leaders, fraternity and sorority members, etc. are voting. If they are not voting, encourage them to do so.

We hope the Voter Roll Call will be used as the conscience of Dallas County. Hopefully, knowing that your voting activity is public will be an incentive for more people to vote. Whether you vote or not, it is public record – who you vote for is not. There are many registered voters who do not go to the polls and vote. They think no one will ever know if they vote or not.

Blacks should be ashamed for not voting. Our history – the Civil Rights Movement – the struggle for the right to vote, involved blood and tears along with many sacrifices.

When Ann Richards was running for governor of Texas she visited the Martin Luther King Center and used The Dallas Examiner Voter Roll Call in a campaign speech saying, “Dallas you are not voting” – while holding The Dallas Examiner Voter Roll Call up for all present to see. At that time, The Dallas Examiner printed the voting records in the newspaper in predominately Black precincts. This became cost prohibitive, so a software program was created with the voting records of all Dallas County registered voters.

The general election will be Nov. 4. We would like to encourage all qualified residents to be sure they are registered to vote by Oct 6. Double-check your registration and be sure that all of your information is accurate. All registered voters can vote early between Oct. 20 and Oct. 31. If needed, disabled individuals should alert their voting stations for ease of access or to have your ballot brought to your vehicle.

The Dallas Examiner will be doing several things to encourage voting – especially among the millennial generation. We will also continue to educate the community on the candidates and issues that will be on the ballot, through printed/online articles and The Dallas Examiner’s Monday Night Politics – Meet the Candidates. We want to see the voter turnout in Dallas County increase significantly. Read The Dallas Examiner for details of upcoming events.

Join the conversation. Email your letters to mbelt@dallasexaminer.com.