There are two weeks left until El Pasoans make one of the most important decisions of the decade. Early voting has already started. Within two weeks, the destiny of El Paso and the nation is in the hands of the electorate.

Are you registered to vote? Check your voter status here.

For those fortunate enough to be registered to vote it is imperative that you realize your duty and cast your vote. Either through early voting, going on now, or on Election Day it is your duty to cast your vote.

However, you feel about the El Paso bond election or the stadium it is important that you speak your mind through your vote. As for the national elections, your choice is clear, remain the course or elect an alternative.

Personally, there are three offices that I feel need to be addressed.

The first is the national elections. As an immigrant, I feel that President Obama speaks a good game but as a businessperson I have experienced first hand that his focused attention to Obamacare has exasperated the business climate. Candidate Romney’s party is too divisive internally which causes the GOP to espouse virtues contrary to fairness to the realities of the failure that is the immigration policies of the United States.

There is no viable alternative but one must be chosen. In this case, and reluctantly I must choose Romney. This choice is strictly based on the economic situation. The truth is that immigration cannot be addressed until the economy strengthens. Therefore, Romney is my choice.

For the US, 16th of Texas, although the Republican candidate has no hope of beating Beto O’Rourke for the seat, in my opinion it is incumbent upon all those who abhor the violence in Cd. Juárez to cast their vote in opposition to Beto O’Rourke. Legalizing drugs is not the answer and therefore O’Rourke has no business in office.

Finally, the debacle of the stadium. El Paso is in the crux of an economic tsunami. The local government leadership knows and clearly understands this and therefore is praying that the electorate approves the bond elections.

El Paso’s economy is primarily derived from three major sources, federal funding of the military base and security services, Mexican influx from Juárez and governmental investment in infrastructure. It is this last element that the local leadership, including the proponents of the stadium is banking on to keep the local economy viable. The Mexican influx has dried up because of the cartel conflict and federal government funding has dried up regardless of the eventual presidential winner. There is no federal funding in the pipeline for the near future.

Without the funding of the stadium or the other bond proposals floated by the city, the local economy will suffer greatly in the next few years.

This is the dirty little secret that the proponents of the bond elections are hoping everyone misses.

As painful as this may be for the community, it is imperative that the electorate cast a resounding no to the bond elections so that the local government understands that it is the electorate that makes decisions for the future of the city, and not back door deals designed to further the corruption of the city.

Therefore, it is important to vote no on the bond elections.

Whether you agree with me or not, it is important that you let your voice be heard.

Martin Paredes

Martín Paredes is a Mexican immigrant who built his business on the U.S.-Mexican border. As an immigrant, Martín brings the perspective of someone who sees México as a native through the experience...