Opinion: Local politics matter, especially this year

Baton Rouge’s echo chamber was filled with theories last week about the momentous spike in early voting. Nearly all of the reads and interpretations, including the recent analyses published by Louisiana’s daily newspapers, attributed the 10 percent early voting turnout to a variety of national conditions, such as the Kavanaugh cold, Blue Wave fever and Trumpitis.

Even when taken collectively, this prescription offers an incomplete explanation for the badly-needed surge in voter engagement, which in turn served as an injustice to Louisiana politics and its parochial nature.

So what was driving early voter turnout this go around? Don’t look exclusively north, toward the Beltway, for answers. Look locally instead — particularly at our high-interest elections for parish presidencies, mayoralties, chiefs of police badges and seats on city councils and school boards…


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