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Archive for Monday, June 16, 2008

Voter turnout in tiny ND town: Zero

June 16, 2008

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— Pillsbury Mayor Darrel Brudevold said voter turnout in the city's primary election usually is fairly high.

"I dare say a half-dozen people usually make it to the polls," he said. That represents about a quarter of the residents in the Barnes County farming community, in southeastern North Dakota.

But on June 10, no one showed up. Not even those on the ballot.

Brudevold ran unopposed for re-election. His wife, Ruth, and Dan Lindseth faced no challengers for their alderman seats.

"Everybody has got a job, and they're busy," Brudevold said. "It just worked out that nobody seemed to go down there to the polls."

Only about 11 people live in Pillsbury proper, and the remainder of the residents live on farms outside the city. There is no precinct in town, so residents must drive about 12 miles to neighboring Sibley to cast their votes.

Brudevold's wife, Ruth, runs the beauty shop and is the town's postmaster. She said she was too busy with work to make it to the polls.

Brudevold said he intended to vote, but that he had crops to tend. He said he assumed at least one person would show up to vote. But since no one did, Brudevold said he'll ask state election officials what to do next.

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