Maybe the party is just starting

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TGIO.

Thank God It’s Over.

Another campaign season is now, gratefully, in the rearview mirror, albeit too close for real comfort.

Feverish partisanship was on full display for these midterms. As of this writing it’s too early to tell how Kootenai County’s turnout ended up, but all signs pointed to the devout lefters and righters making their feelings officially known.

The county elections office and, by extension, the county clerk’s office which oversees elections, took some heat for running out of ballots for District 4 in early voting. Frankly, that should never happen, but who knew the human tide would rise so high before Nov. 6? And given a choice, wouldn’t you rather have ballots run out than have stacks untouched? Participation is supposed to be the lifeblood of democracy, after all.

One big regret: That election results for Kootenai County are no longer tallied in time to make the print edition of The Press. We understand that many readers are disappointed. In the good ol’ days, they expected local results on their porch or driveway the morning after, but because the process of counting actually takes so much longer the past few years, that simply is beyond the newspaper’s control. Can’t get results in and papers delivered anywhere close to on time.

The silver lining is that elections officials believe this slower process is needed to ensure more accuracy. Put another way, they’re less worried about getting the counting done fast enough to please journalists and newspaper readers, and more concerned about getting the job done right. Yet it’s our hope that somehow, they figure out a way to accomplish both. It’s been done before without a whole lot more voters participating.

Today, we hope, marks the end to months of acrimony, for candidates and voters alike. Now it’s time for those who came out on the short end of the ballot-counting stick to begin healing and for those who were victorious to congratulate their worthy opponents. Both sides should be heartily congratulated because they gave voters choices, and that, too, is essential to sustaining democracy.

Whether your team came out ahead or behind, please, let’s keep in mind that our county, state and nation always do better when we’re all helping each other up rather than knocking each other down.

Yes, we’re glad another election is in the books. But we’re eager to see how far we can go, together.

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