Andrew Fink ’06 is running for a seat in the Michigan House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives. | Facebook

Without an in-person pres­i­dential debate to dis­tract us this week, we have the oppor­tunity to focus on local races. Today, the can­di­dates for the Michigan House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives seat, Tamara Barnes (D) and Andrew Fink ® will face off in a debate at 9:15 a.m. on the radio station WTVB (1590 AM, 95.5 FM). 

Ten­sions are high for next month’s pres­i­dential election, but chances are that most people already have voted or know for whom they’ll vote. 

But how much thought have we given to local can­di­dates as they discuss the issues of our com­munity? These include every­thing from how to respond to the COVID-19 pan­demic to tax rates to the quality of our roads.

If all pol­itics is local, learning about the contest for the state House may serve a more prac­tical purpose. The con­se­quences of these local races heavily influence our com­munity and our fam­ilies. Barnes and Fink are members of our com­munity — many of us know them per­sonally, and if we don’t, we have the oppor­tunity to get to know them through this radio debate, reading about them in this issue of the Col­legian (see page A7), and in other ways. Sending one of them to Lansing to rep­resent us has far more direct con­se­quences on our daily lives than who we send to Washington.

Tune into the Barnes and Fink debate as they run to rep­resent us in the Michigan House — we might learn something.