Voting is a civic responsibility of every U.S. citizen of 18 years old or older.

This is the third election I was able to vote in and it was the first major election I was able to vote in. I voted by absentee ballot for the state of Virginia in the Virginia Beach District. This year we voted on one Senate position, a House of Representatives position, two amendments to the state’s constitution, mayor, city counsel members, and school board members.

I voted for the incumbent candidates for the Senate and the House, and mayor, because they have been doing a good job with their careers. They know the state and the communities they represent. They know the needs of the people because they listen to them.

For the City Council members and School Board members I voted for the incumbent candidates as well, except for the district in which I live, the Princess Anne District. I happen to personally know a candidate for Member City Council Princess Anne District and Member School Board Princess Anne District. So I voted for them because I know them. And because it is a comforting thought to have someone I personally know in a public office position.

I did not have to think to hard about who to vote for Senate, House, Mayor, City Council, and School Board. However, I did take a day or two to think about how I wanted to vote on the two amendments to the State’s constitution. This first proposal was “Should a county, city, or town be authorized to provide a partial tax exemption for real property that is subject to recurrent flooding, if flooding resiliency improvements have been made on the property?” I voted yes, because there are ares of Virginia Beach that are prone to floods due to the low elevation and natural swamp of the land. Many small family-owned farms sit on land that is prone to flooding and they should not suffer financially due to circumstance they cannot control when they have take all preventative measures. The second proposal was “Shall the real property tax exemption for a primary residence that is currently provided to the surviving spouses of veterans who had a one hundred percent service-connected, permanent, and total disability be amended to allow the surviving spouse to move to a different primary residence and still claim the exemption?” I voted yes to this amendment as well, because the spouse’s of veterans sacrifice just as much as their spouse, and any compensation for such service to the country should not have limits. If the real property tax is exempted for the veteran and their family then the exemption should remain valid if the surviving spouse moves to a more reasonable place of primary residence.

When it came to voting on the two state constitution amendments, I used emotions as information. Because both of the amendments were on emotional topics, especially since both apply to my life. So what made sense emotionally, I used as my reasoning on how I voted.

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