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Debates key to making informed decisions

With plenty of distractions all around — not to mention some well-deserved cases of campaign fatigue — American voters would be well-served to tune in and pay attention as the general election nears.

Sens. Barack Obama and John McCain squared off in their first debate on Friday night, a hard sell in the South were many of the voters found themselves focused on the football field instead of the television screen. For those who did watch, no clear-cut winner emerged … unless, of course, you already had a favorite candidate.

Luckily, we have two more chances to watch the presidential candidates debate.

And, moreover, on Thursday we’ll be able to see the vice presidential nominees debate — perhaps the biggest draw in the whole debate series.

And don’t forget that on Thursday, Oct. 9, Pike County candidates will be taking part in a stump meeting, free to the public. The question-and-answer session will include all the candidates for contested seats on the county commission, as well as Jay Love and Bobby Bright, who are vying for the U.S. Senate seat.

The stump meeting begins at 7 p.m. at Swindall RV Park and is sponsored by the Pike County Chamber of Commerce, The Messenger, WTBF and Troy Cable/Channel 52.

All of these debates are designed with a simple purpose — giving voters an opportunity to become better informed about the candidates seeking to lead our county, our state and even our nation.

It’s our responsibility as voters to tune-in and take notes.