Polls are now open in Minnesota. The race for a new mayor in Minneapolis and the use of ranked choice voting will be among the most-watched story lines.
Dreamed all night I had to cover 13 simultaneous City Council endorsing conventions--and then lost my reporter's notebook. #gladitsalmostover
Voters John Christensen and his wife Marge Schwab walked to Loring Community School to vote. They said there was no confusion about rank-choice voting. They cast the same three choices. Their top choice for mayor is Betsy Hodges, citing her vision for the city.
Christenson and Schwab said 35 candidates, some absurd, distracted from the real issues a bit. "It's not entertainment. That's why we have cable TV," Christensen said.
Election Protection, a D.C.-based nonprofit, is running a voter hotline. If you have any questions or concerns at the polls, you can call 1-866-OUR-VOTE.
"One person asked me 'Why are we making three votes?' That's it," said Keith Ford, a volunteer Bethel Lutheran Church in the Eighth ward who said he's seen little confusion over ranked choice voting.
"They need to increase the filing fees so that not everybody with a double sawbuck in their wallet can register to become mayor," said Paul Gustafson, a voter in the Eighth ward.
If you see anything unusual at the polls or have any other concerns send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 612.673.4028.
Polls are open until 8 p.m. in Minneapolis and St. Paul (that goes for Hennepin and Ramsey counties, too)
Erik Hansen, assistant head election judge at Folwell Recreation Cener said he anticipates voting will pick up at 3 p.m. and through the evening hours. No real confusion over rank choice voting.
"People want to talk about it and make sure they know what they are doing," Hansen said.
A better designed ballot compared to the last rank-choice ballot and the fact that voters got a sample ballot in the mail helped streamline voting today, he said.