So a whirlwind Linn County gambling referendum campaign ends in a snowstorm on voting day.
We’ll go now to our Snowlection 2013 correspondent, Jack London:
“The man flung a look back along the way he had come. The Yukon lay a mile wide and hidden under three feet of ice. On top of this ice were as many feet of snow. It was all pure white, rolling in gentle undulations where the ice-jams of the freeze-up had formed. North and south, as far as his eye could see, it was unbroken white, save for a dark hair-line that curved and twisted from around the spruce-covered island to the south, and that curved and twisted away into the north, where it disappeared behind another spruce-covered island.”
A bleak picture, Jack. You’d better build a fire.
Of course, thanks to the miracle of mail-in voting, thousands upon thousands of Linn County citizens have already cast ballots. They’re inside, sitting by a warm fire, more than a little smug in their blanket of civic satisfaction, and maybe a Snuggie.
For the rest of us, stubborn traditionalists, it’s a rugged trudge to the polls. A test of our mettle. I’ve provisioned my backpack with sowbelly, hardtack, molasses, 150 ft. of rope, a flare gun, two jugs of whiskey, a harmonica and my will. Just as soon as I’ve attached an avalanche tracking beacon to my parka, I’ll be ready to go.
Four blocks there, four blocks back. Nothing but white, broken only by vinyl covered houses, tastefully planted shrubbery and swing sets. Shudder.
All in all, I’d rather be lounging by the pool, in an indoor water park, perhaps.
So who gets the advantage from this snowy intrusion, Vote Yes Linn County or Just Say No Casino? Conventional wisdom would suggest that “no” voters may be more motivated, and therefore, more likely to laugh at the weather. That could make a difference in a close vote.
But the polls are open until 8 p.m., and travel conditions should improve later today. So no excuses. OK, some excuses. You can find your precinct here.
I also wonder how the weather will impact vote counting and reporting. I’ve queried the auditor on the matter. His email response:
“As of now, we have 18 precincts – mainly in the rural areas – calling in results at the end of the night with the others transporting their results to the Public Service Center for uploading into the online system. I would hope we would have the results reported no later than 8:45 pm barring any accidents by the transporters or unforeseen issues.”
As far as predictions, you’ve got me. I thought Just Say No had the advantage last week. Then came the water park wrinkle, which made me less sure. Now the weather. So any prediction I make would just be a wild guess. Call Dick Morris
In other casino news:
The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports that the owner of Waterloo’s Lost Island water park now has raised eyebrows, thanks to Dan Kehl’s last-minute water park offer in CR.
Craig Robinson at The Iowa Republican digs into Vote Yes Linn County’s deployment of Gov. Terry Branstad’s campaign apparatus. He wonders if that might cause some problems for the governor.