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June 30, 2004



The thing about Missoula is that they get everyone on campus registered so that they can sign the initiative petitions, but when June rolls around they're out of town. Plus, since you stay on the rolls for approx six years, many of the students who were registered in Missoula are long gone by this year's vote.For instance, I bet that you are registered to vote somewhere other than in Montana, and you are now part of the statistics of the people "who didn't care enough to vote."
By the way, why do we have this obsession with getting every last person to vote? If they don't care to do it of their own volition, do we really want them to vote? Aren't these people on the margins the ones most subject to emotional appeals and flimsy arguments?


It sounds right that the high student registration and turnover in Missoula would distort turnout numbers. Maybe the stability of rural counties also gives them higher turnout numbers.

As far as why I'm interested in turnout, it's not because I think there's much I can do about it; people have to make their own choices of how to spend their time. Instead, I wonder why Montana once had such high turnout but now has only average turnout. Why so many marginal voters in Montana now, and not then?

Sarpy Sam

Big Horn County has a dual problem on voter turnout. Like you state the Indian population is one of the problems but it is actually leads to the other problem too. Even if only a small percentage of the Indian population votes, they will overwhelm the non-Indians voting and make thier votes worthless so many don't even bother.

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