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The Daily Tar Heel

Primary colors: Early voting has started for primary elections

The primary elections for one of North Carolina’s U.S. Senate seats are just around the corner, which means it’s time for students to start thinking about who to vote for.

North Carolina holds closed primary elections, in which voters can only vote for candidates within the parties they are affiliated with.

But regardless of one’s ideological leanings, it’s important that every eligible student show up at the polls to vote.

North Carolina is also a state with one-stop voting.

This means that people who haven’t registered to vote can still show up at the polls during the early-voting period.

Early voting started Thursday and ends May 1. Election Day is May 4.

Those who haven’t yet registered to vote cannot sign up on Election Day itself. They must vote during the early-voting period.

It has been said time and time again that voter participation is an essential pillar of democracy. While this might start to sound like a cliché, it is nevertheless true.

In midterm elections, when no president is being voted into office, voter turnout tends to drop significantly.

Because this election doesn’t have the glamour that surrounds big names like Barack Obama and John McCain, voters might feel apathetic about the election or simply forget to vote.

But this does not make this year’s primary elections any less important. U.S. senators are part of our representation in the federal government, so they must be chosen with care.

Students should start doing their research on candidates now so they can understand the issues and make an educated decision.

So now that early voting is underway, make sure that you take a few minutes in between classes to head over to the Morehead Planetarium. Every voice in the state needs to be heard.

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