By Jonathan Cannon

By Jonathan Cannon

Herald Democrat

As we move from Presidents Day, which was Monday, to the first day of early voting it seems only fitting that we should look at what our presidents, and other world leaders, have to say about voting.

"A man without a vote is a man without protection." — Commonly attributed to President Lyndon Johnson.

Voting is power, the former president seems to be saying. It’s our voice in an imperfect system, as former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill suggested while speaking on the floor of Parliament in November 1947: "It has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time."

Another quote, which is often attributed to President Theodore Roosevelt, seems to suggest that the system is not so bad, it’s just about who wields the vote: "A vote is like a rifle: its usefulness depends upon the character of the user."

I subscribe more to that theory, and I think there’s some pretty good character out there among voters. I hope those voters find the time to cast their ballots in the primary election.

While this is not the final election this season, for some seats, the primary election will be the deciding one. It will be the election that decides who leads the Commissioners Court, which directs county tax dollars. It will decide commissioner seats, justice of the peace positions, treasurers, and party candidates for state and national seats.

Early ballots can be cast in Grayson County from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Feb. 18-21, Feb. 22 and Feb. 24-28, as well as noon to 5 p.m. on Feb. 23 at the Grayson County Courthouse, Grayson County sub-courthouse in Denison, Pottsboro Independent School District Administration Building, Whitesboro City Hall, and Grayson College in Van Alstyne.

Fannin County voters can cast their ballots from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Feb. 18 - 28 at the Fannin County Courthouse.

If you’re not sure what your choices are, visit for links to sample ballots, candidate debates and other Herald Democrat election coverage.

I urge you to vote your conscience.

"Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost." — President John Quincy Adams.

Happy birthday Tuesday to Delbert Hensley, Yanna Smith, Starla McKinney and Sue Sappenfield, all of Sherman; Lori Walker, Henry Schleuse, Alyse Paige Nix and Mae Burchfield, all of Denison; Julie Nelms of Ector; Carroll Foster of Honey Grove; Martha Calhoun, Shirley Zachary, Pat Weishaar.