Tuesday, December 11, 2007

David Yepsen Owes All Iowans an Apology

David Yepsen has another article in the Des Moines Register today that attempts to suppress voting among college students and limit the voice of young Iowans.

As I said before...

These students are residents of Iowa for at least 10 months of the year and many stay in the state over the summer to work and take classes.
On top of that, these students are the ones Iowa is depending on to stay in the state after they graduate. With all of the discussion about brain drain, chastising these students for attempting to exercise their legal right to vote isn't the right way to encourage them to stay in the state.

However, more importantly, Yepsen is questioning the integrity of the Iowa caucuses. This comes after Iowa had to fight tooth and nail to preserve it's first in the nation status. If other states believe the results of the Iowa caucuses are tainted, we will surely lose our position as the first caucus in the nation. David Yepsen owes all Iowans an apology for even making this suggestion.


Ben said...

Are you going to drive to Illinois to vote in their primary?

The issue isn't whether college students should have the right to register and vote in the state where they go to school. The issue is whether intentionalyl diluting the Iowa electorate with out of state voters in order to pad your numbers is an appropriate campaign tactic.

The ideolgical conceit of the caucus system is that it is a neighborhood meeting of local residents getting together to hash out who they think would be the best candidate. If that paradigm is subverted into making it nothing more than a test of a campaign organizations ability to stuff the caucus site, then Iowa becomes nothing more then a (realatively) cheap place for candidates to practice their speechs before real primaries.

Then again maybe it's naive of Iowans (read Yepsen) to think that the caucus' haven't been subverted to the will of the national campaign establishment.

noneed4thneed said...

Yepsen only briefly mentions out of state staffers coming, but has repeatedly questioned if out of state college students should be voting (while at the same time saying it is legal for them to do so).

Ben said...

Getting your staffers to caucus won't stuff the caucus nearly as much as getting college students to caucus will...plus it will be far more visable to the press.

Yepsen's point, and I think it a fair one, is that out-of-state college students are not Iowa residents. There is a simple way to tell that, because they pay out of state tuition. Commenting that maybe a having out-of-state residents come to neighborhood meetings might not quite be in the spirit of the event. Of course it's legal for them to do so, but it does seem (to me) to show a certain amount of "bad sportsmanship".

I don't see anyone arguing that college students shouldn't be politically active, or shouldn't vote. Rather, they should vote at their homes. Caucusing because it's cool and Iowa is more important then your homestate just strikes me as a bit petty.

Yepsen also makes a fair point that if it is perceived that the Iowa caucus results are "tainted" by stuffing the ballot box with "non-Iowans" it diminishes the importance of the result. With as much criticism as there is regarding Iowa keeping its first-in-the-nation status, do we as a state really want to have to fight over the validity of the results too?

noneed4thneed said...

They are considered out-of-state because chances are their parents are paying the bills and their parents live out-of-state. However, if these students are supposed to vote where their homes are then they should vote in Iowa because they are living in Iowa at least 10 months of the year.

ebb lenkin said...

How sad these "ruffian" students do they not see the unethical aspect of all of this, and worse, Mr. Obama promoted it. He will never get my vote, period, and I would have voted for him. Politcal ethics matter, and the Democratic Party should be ashamed of themsleves. I have voted in every election in my life, have become a presidnetial historian, own a $40,000.00 American politcal historical library, and have now shamed myself, telling Pakistanis, Brazilians, and folks from India, we have politcal honor in America. These students, and Obama's handlers, including him, have made me a liar.