The Power of the Minnesotan Vote on Nov. 8

October 25, 2016 at 10:35 am

Throughout the summer and early fall I have spoken with several political advisers about this year’s election.  When I parsed through the jargon, I came up with a single common denominator: it’s a total “crap shoot.”

A recent blog post by Faegre Baker Daniels (NAIOP Minnesota’s lobbyists) previews the election’s potential impact in Minnesota, highlighting not only the presidential race, but all 201 seats in the Minnesota House and Senate and all eight of Minnesota’s congressional districts on the 2016 ballot. Bottom line: Notwithstanding Trump’s apparent implosion recently, no one can predict with certainty how a normally robust voter turnout may be influenced by an electorate turned off by both contenders.  In fact, Faegre Baker Daniels believes only a few thousand votes could determine the control of the Minnesota Legislature.

Does this match up with what you’re hearing? Drop me a note and let me know.  More importantly, this information should motivate you to not only vote – and vote the entire ballot – but also encourage others to vote. Using the Secretary of State’s poll finder, it’s easy to find polling places, precinct districts, and candidates and questions on the ballot. The Star Tribune has also put together an election tool to help you learn about candidates and races, locate your polling place, and stay updated after the polls close on Election Day.

In past presidential elections, Minnesota has favored the DFL and led the nation in voter turnout. But this year seems different, Faegre Baker Daniels pointing to lowest primary voter turnout since 1950. However, just six days after in-person absentee voting opened on Sept. 23, the Secretary of State reported that 100,000 Minnesotans had already sent in their absentee ballots. (In comparison, Faegre Baker Daniels cites that 200,000 Minnesotans total cast an absentee ballot in 2014.)  And perhaps more than ever, political parties covet the value of your vote. A recent Pioneer Press article, for example, showcases the ferocity of election battles in Burnsville. Seriously, voting this year is that important.

After you have performed your civic duty and listened to the Nov. 9 water cooler talk, I invite you a post-election recap/forecast to hear from experts firsthand. Our post-election “Coffee and CREam” event on Nov. 10 will feature John Rouleau, Executive Director of the Minnesota Jobs Coalition, and Joe Davis, Executive Director of Alliance for a Better Minnesota. The event will be hosted by Todd Rapp of public affairs firm Himle Rapp and Co. and begin at 7:30 a.m. at Kraus Anderson Companies (3433 Broadway St. NE in Minneapolis). Plenty of free parking will be available. I hope to see you there.

If you have any questions at all, send me an email.

– Quinn Cheney, Director of Public Policy


Entry filed under: Public Policy | Government Affairs.

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