OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - Peggy Blanchard has been volunteering at the polls in Ocean Springs for more than a decade. Voting has always been important to her, but it became even more important eight years ago.
"I'm really in favor of everyone using this American privilege of voting," Blanchard said. "This is such a privilege I feel, because I lost a grandson in Iraq."
For her grandson's sacrifice, and all the others who died serving our country, Blanchard believes all those who are eligible to vote should.
"I think everyone should take advantage of what our veterans have gone through to make it available to us to choose who leads our country," Blanchard said.
Howard Newman was the first person to vote at the Villa Maria Apartments in Ocean Springs.
"For you who don't vote, remember one thing Thomas Jefferson said, 'Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty,' and if you don't cast your vote, you get exactly what you deserve," Newman said. "It's tragic in this country. I doubt if 50 percent of registered voters get up and vote."
Newman and some of the other early morning voters fear many people do not pay enough attention to know what is going on in the world to know that this is a very important election.
"All sorts of things," Newman said. "Social security, Medicare, Obama care, anything you can think about is on the cutting block."
"This is a critical election, very critical for the state of Mississippi and for our country. I would only hope that whoever is elected today could go back to Washington and do something about the ramped pork-barreling politics that go on here," said voter Franklin Leach.
If the issues are not enough to motivate voters, Blanchard hopes the sacrifices our military members make will get people to exercise their right to vote.
"If we could just get 60 percent of them out, it would just please me much," Blanchard said.
Whoever wins Tuesday's election will face Democratic nominee Travis Childers and Reform Party nominee Shawn O'Hara in the November 4, election.