Non-partisan website helps educate voters on local candidates

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — A new website is helping people get more information on local candidates.

It’s a busy election season.

It can be hard to know where to look for more information about who’s on your ballot.

“It’s definitely trickier to find information on people who are less in the mainstream,” said Ben Berwick, a voter.

It’s especially hard when there are a lot of officers to vote for.

“You go in knowing who you’re going to vote for, for President,” said Courtney Paul, a voter. “Then you go, okay, here’s all these local people.”

The creators of Voter 411 ENC want to make those choices easier.

“People shouldn’t be left voting on the basis of yard signs,” said Cindy Elmore, a professor at ECU. “That’s not good for democracy.”

Elmore said the idea came to here when she was trying to find more information on her local candidates in Winterville.

Elmore says there is plenty of information out there on the Presidential and Senate races.

It’s difficult to track down well-sourced, non-biased, information about local candidates.

“If you care about things like traffic patterns, or flooding, or whether or not your children’s schools are good…Donald Trump doesn’t have a lot of influence on those, but local officials do,” said Elmore.

The website breaks down Pitt County races, from county commissioners to state representatives.

Click on a candidate, and you get information on them, and their opponent.

“We asked them what their priorities are, we asked them how they would include constituents in decision making,” said Elmore.

She says they’re still waiting for some candidates to respond.

“It’s vital for democracy that people aren’t voting blindly on these positions. They should know something about who’s running for them,” said Elmore.

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