Forum News Service: Hot Minnesota races may drive up voter turnout

EXCERPT: “In four of the past five statewide primaries, greater Minnesota voters were more likely to participate than residents of the seven-county Twin Cities area. In three of those contests, the sheer number of greater Minnesota voters was greater than in the Twin Cities. That dominance comes even as greater Minnesota has fewer registered voters (1.4 million) than the Twin Cities (1.7 million). Twin Cities voters typically cast more ballots in November elections, but greater Minnesota residents continue to turn out in strong numbers. ‘Folks in rural Minnesota are very engaged with what is going on in their communities,’ said Bradley Peterson, executive director of the Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities. ‘They need to be listened to. Any candidate that doesn’t — does so at their own peril.’ Simon, the state’s top election official, would not predict how many voters will turn out later this month, but said based on early voting more people may cast ballots than they have for most other primary elections.” FULLSTORY: