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Why vote? Here are 6 reasons.

Column by Commissioner Cook

  • 17 February 2022
  • Author: Doris Sanchez
  • Number of views: 3003

Commissioner Cook is shown holding her voter registration card and driver’s license after she voted early at the Jester Annex in Round Rock during the last midterm elections.Williamson County Commissioner Terry Cook: Why vote? Here are 6 reasons. (statesman.com)

Why vote?

In preparation for this topic, I perused the history of elections and voting on History.com. Apparently colonial candidates boozed up voters to, through and after the polls. George Washington is reported to have plied his potential voters with 47 gallons of beer, 35 gallons of wine, 2 gallons of cider, 3.5 pints of brandy and a whopping 70 gallons of rum punch. He won the election by 310 votes.

So who were these voters? Primarily wealthy, white, landholding, Protestant men.  However, voting did not start out with the coveted privacy of the ballot deposited in a box, but was an in-person, audible vote. The wealthy voters might have received individual visits from the candidates prior to the election. On election day, supporters in many cities rented out taverns for a boozy pre-vote party. Then everyone would participate in an impromptu parade to the polls. For the less rich, all action was on election day when the candidates were expected to greet all at the polls. Following the vote, additional tavern-parties, complete with booze and food no matter how you voted, would occur. Ah, the good ol’ days.

So how did we come to have nationwide Election Day on a November Tuesday, that fickle month for weather? We go back to 1845 when Congress passed a federal designation for the first Tuesday following the first Monday in November as Election Day across the country. Congress sought to eliminate early voting in some parts of the nation from influencing the later votes in other areas. Why Tuesday and why November? Back in the day, America was primarily an agrarian economy. Crops were planted during spring or late summer, were harvested primarily in or at the end of the summer and all that work afterward continued into late fall. 

You had to travel to your county’s seat to cast your vote – think about how big some of Texas’ counties are and your transportation mode was a horse. It could easily take over a day to reach your poll site. Sundays were church days and were not to be encroached upon. Wednesdays were market days – your horse was needed to pull the wagon into town. We are still primarily following the farm culture for the vote although mail-in voting and early voting has increased our bandwidth for casting votes.

League of Women Voters Website

For comprehensive information regarding the March Primary and November General Election 2022

  • 2 February 2022
  • Author: Doris Sanchez
  • Number of views: 2822


Brought to you by The League of Women Voters Education Fund!


Personalized Voting Information

See What's On Your Ballot

Check Your Voter Registration

Find Your Polling Place

Discover Upcoming Debates In Your Area

And Much More!

Early Voting Schedule

Voters registered in Williamson County may vote at any location in the county.

  • 26 January 2022
  • Author: Doris Sanchez
  • Number of views: 3554

Registered voters may vote at any location listed below

Early Voting dates and times:
Monday February 14th through Friday February 18th 8am-6pm
Saturday February 19th 7am-7pm
Sunday February 20th 11am-5pm
Monday February 21st Closed for the holiday
Tuesday February 22nd through Friday February 25th 7am-7pm

Main Voting Location: Georgetown Annex, 100 Wilco Way, HR108

Click here for SAMPLE BALLOT lookup
Click here for COMPOSITE BALLOT pdf

Primary elections, register to vote & vote-by-mail information

From the Williamson County Elections Office

  • 26 January 2022
  • Author: Doris Sanchez
  • Number of views: 3269

Red/white/blue sign printed with Register to Vote and stars. .bring.com/images The Democratic and Republican primary elections will be March 1, 2022. 

Each party has its own ballot, and you can only vote in one party’s primary election. 

Make sure you register to vote in time for this election! Here are important dates to remember:

·         Last day to register to vote: Monday, Jan. 31, 2022

·         Early Voting period: Monday, Feb. 14 to Friday, Feb. 25, 2022

·         First Day to Apply for Ballot by Mail: Saturday, Jan. 1, 2022

·         Last Day to Apply for Ballot by Mail (Received, not postmarked): Friday, Feb. 18, 2022

To check your voter registration status, find your polling site, or view your sample ballot (during election times) click here.

Register to Vote (new Williamson County voters)

Change Name or Address (currently registered Williamson County voters)

Request for Mail-in Ballot information on next page. 

Are we ready for another natural disaster?

Column by Commissioner Cook

  • 20 January 2022
  • Author: Doris Sanchez
  • Number of views: 2256

A long procession of motorists flee from a fire raging close to the town of Granby, Colo. in October 2020. Central Texas also has its share of fires, along with flooding, tornadoes, hailstorms and droughts, and last year a historic and deadly severe winter freeze. Commissioner Cook asks how well prepared Central Texans are for the next natural disaster. Photo by Hart Van Denburg/CPR News

This stint of cold weather has brought with it lots of media stories and projections concerning a possible repeat of last year's deadly winter freeze in Texas and the possibility and warnings to get ready. Well, are you?

Not only a bout with seriously low temps again, but what about flooding or sweeping grass fires? I watched on Dec. 30 the live coverage of Boulder (Colorado) County’s fire as it swept through the area of my former home, which still is standing while homes in front of it and behind it were reduced to ash. This fire was burning a football field-size area and all its contents in seconds with the hurricane-force wind gusts of 115 mph. All but one person was able to evacuate, but everything they possessed is gone for thousands of families, including many pets.

Central Texas leads the nation in the variety and the frequency of natural disasters: tornadoes, flooding (remember 2015 in Taylor?), hailstorms, fires (usually caused by humans), and droughts (we're just in serious drought – thank goodness for some, but not enough, rain on Jan. 11). That 2021 winter storm was a new experience and caught many of us off guard and unprepared.


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