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An election year tradition returns to the campaign trail on Monday night when the Shelby County Organized for Preservation and Enhancement and The Sentinel-News conduct their 2012 Candidate Forum.
The questioning of candidates in key races will be at 6:30 p.m. at Stratton Center in Shelbyville, continuing a partnership that SCOPE and The Sentinel-News began in 1988.
“Shelby County has a long tradition of exercising its democratic voice through its republican form of government,” SCOPE President Ronald R. Van Stockum Jr. said. “Running for office and voting for candidates is the essence of our system of government.”
Said Sentinel-News Editor Steve Doyle: “Hearing first-hand how the candidates vying for these important roles would approach those roles – whether newcomers or incumbents – really helps to inform the electorate. We’re pleased that SCOPE has been supportive of this concept.
Candidates for school board, the Shelbyville City Council and the Simpsonville City Commission have been invited to appear, and almost all have said they would.
Candidates will be questioned, and opponents will have the opportunity to respond to their answers.
Each candidate will be given time to summarize his or her candidacy, too.
There will be no questions from the floor during the session.
“For all the talk and hoopla, it comes down to three things: having the courage to stand up and run for office, respecting our tradition by going forth and casting your vote and learning to live together in the same system of law,” Van Stockum said.
“I always feel good about these forums because it allows me to be part of a system I feel very partial to.”