Time to vote: IFB encourages Illinoisans to participate in the process

Organization sees election as an opportunity for agriculture.

By DeLoss Jahnke

At least 30 seats in the Illinois General Assembly are up for grabs in today's election. (Illinois Farm Bureau file photo)

It’s finally here.

Election day is today, and it brings with it many storylines at the local, state and national levels.

“Depending on the outcome of this, there’s going to be a lot of implications for how we move forward on a number of our issues in agriculture,” said Mark Gebhards, Illinois Farm Bureau’s executive director of governmental affairs and commodities.

“First and foremost, we want to encourage everyone to vote; it’s critically important,” he continued. “Democracy only works when you participate. The old saying ‘the world is run by those who show up.’ I think there’s a lot to be said for that when it comes to our political process.”

Of all that’s in the air with this election, there are a few certainties.

Illinois will have a new attorney general, and at least 30 seats will have new occupants in the General Assembly.

“That’s quite a few,” Gebhards said Monday on the “RFD Today” radio program. “This is an opportunity, and we see it as that.”

Gebhards said IFB, commodity groups and other ag organizations have teamed to develop a booklet promoting Illinois agriculture and its importance as it relates to Springfield.

“Not only from an ag production standpoint, but from a food security, food safety and food consumption standpoint,” he said. “We talk about ag as the biggest industry in the state and an economic engine, but if I’m a newly elected urban legislator, what does that mean? So we’re trying to break that down and make the connection of how it works for them and our state.”

Content for this story was provided by FarmWeekNow.com.