MORGANFIELD - From the farms to the mines, people in Union County know a thing or two about hard work to make an honest living. But when those industries don't do well, small businesses also suffer: businesses who are already struggling from a still weak economy.
If you've driven through the county, you've likely taken in the beauty of the rolling hills and farmland as far as the eye can see.
There's no doubt farms and coal mines dominate the landscape here. Those are two industries who have suffered from severe drought and massive layoffs. Jewelry store owner Marvin Butts knows if his customer base suffers, he does too.
He opened his downtown Morganfield store two years ago and he says he's yet to take a paycheck. He worries about the fate of his business and many others.
Butts explains, "There's no more, this business has been passed down through six generations or five generations or four generations. You don't have that no more."
The economy coupled with the arrival of box stores and chain retailers spells disaster for these mom and pop shops.
"Most of your small businesses get [products] from within the United States where your bigger businesses buy from overseas and it's cheaper product."
The downturn isn't only impacting businesses but those they employ as well. Down the street from Marvin's store sits All American Deli: a perfect place to hear voters' voices. Kenyonna Finney works there to make ends meet. She says she's, "Basically living from check to check. Trying to just keep going."
This Election Day, the economy is on many minds and for those who are struggling to make ends meet, it can be frustrating hearing politicians fighting and complaining.
I asked Finney, "Do you feel like people aren't listening?"
She replied, "Um, some people. Probably the people going through the same situation I'm going through, they're probably listening. But those who have money and everything they need, they don't really understand how it is to live from check to check."