Each election season, we at the Herald Community Newspapers invite political candidates to our Garden City office for an hour-long meeting to hear their ideas and views before deciding whom we will endorse. This year will be no different.
We will not allow the pandemic to interfere with one of a newspaper’s solemn responsibilities — offering our take on which candidates we believe are best prepared to represent the people. In the coming weeks, we will be conducting endorsement interviews for county, town and city elections. We will base our decisions on extensive research, including those interviews with representatives of our Editorial Board.
The process of interviewing candidates takes a month. At times an endorsement call is an easy one, while at others we agonize over the decision. We take the process very seriously, considering each candidate’s personal and professional background, commitment to doing good for people and positions on key issues when deciding on our endorsements. Political experience is a plus, but not a requirement to earn our support.
Endorsement decisions are made by a minimum of three Editorial Board representatives, and often considerably more than that. A decision does not require unanimous consent, but rather a simple majority. When there is a dissenting opinion, we often note it in our endorsement.
In the past, we have endorsed both Democrats and Republicans. Our enthusiasm for a candidate is based not on our individual political views, but rather on what we collectively believe to be his or her potential to effect positive change while in office.
Our endorsements will appear in our Oct. 28-Nov. 3 issue.
In the meantime, you will find our coverage of the races in the main section of the paper over the coming weeks. We might cover a news conference convened by a candidate on a salient issue or issues. We will publish Q&A’s with candidates, asking them to opine on subjects relevant to our readers. In a Q&A, candidates are asked to respond to each question in a maximum of 250 words. When they exceed that limit, we cut the response from the end down.
For the second straight year, New York will allow early voting, which will begin Oct. 23 and continue through Oct. 31. Voters can cast ballots at selected sites across Nassau County during that period. For a complete list of early polling places and their hours, go to the Nassau County Board of Elections website.
If you need to file an application for an absentee ballot, you can call the Board of Elections, at (516) 571-8683, and ask for one; fax a request to (516) 571-2058; or mail a request to Nassau County Board of Elections, 240 Old Country Road, Fifth Floor, P.O. Box 9002, Mineola, N.Y. 11501.
Otherwise, you can cast your ballot at your local polling place from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 2.
All elections are consequential. Presidential elections are always hotly contested, and garner outsized attention. Though local elections are far more low-key, they are often more consequential to people’s everyday lives, affecting their property-tax bills, policing, roads, parks, garbage collection and sewer and water systems. If you want your voice to be heard, you need to cast a ballot.
Our democracy is not, as they say, a spectator sport. It requires participation. So, in the coming weeks, please pay close attention to the Heralds’ coverage of the candidates and then, regardless of how you do so, fulfill that most American of civic duties and vote.
Early voting will take place at 17 locations across Nassau County this year. The following are within the Heralds’ coverage area: Elmont Public Library, Freeport Recreation Center, Glen Cove City Hall, Hempstead Recreation Center at Kennedy Park, Lawrence Country Club, Long Beach City Hall, Rockville Centre Recreation Center, Valley Stream Presbyterian Church, St. Frances De Chantal Church in Wantagh, West Hempstead Public Library.
Early voting will take place on the following dates and times:
• Saturday, Oct. 23, 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.
• Sunday, Oct. 24, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
• Monday, Oct. 25, 6 a.m. - 7 p.m.
• Tuesday, Oct. 26, 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
• Wednesday, Oct. 27, 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
• Thursday, Oct. 28, 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
• Friday, Oct. 29, 6 a.m. - 6 p.m.
• Saturday, Oct. 30, 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.
• Sunday, Oct. 31, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Source: Nassau County Board of Elections