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Iowa truck stop offers a ‘corny’ presidential poll

Customers at the I-35 truck stop can vote for Obama or Romney by placeing a piece of seed corn in a jar.

Iowa is well-known for its presidential straw poll, which can make or break a candidate in the very early goings. (Of course it doesn’t necessarily have much predictive value: Michele Bachmann won it in August 2011.)

MinnPost photo by Joe Kimball
The “corn poll” at Iowa’s Boondocks Cafe

On Saturday, during our travels, we came across a new Iowa presidential poll that also has an ag theme.

A “corn poll” went up the other day at the Boondocks Cafe, a truck stop off  I-35 near Williams, Iowa, maybe 75 miles south of the Minnesota border.

A bowl of seed corn sits near the register, near two large glass jars, labeled, left to right, “Obama” and “Romney.”

“Please Vote,” says the sign.

They’d been on display for a couple days, said waitress Hillary Hollingshead.

“Our boss thought it would be a clever thing to do,” she said.

Anyone who’s at least 18 is welcome to vote, and they don’t require voter ID, she said.

As of our visit, the Romney jar had more corn than Obama’s. “People around here like Romney,” she said.

In 2008, though, Hamilton County went narrowly for President Obama over John McCain, 49.72% to 48.42%.

A couple late-evening omelets tasted pretty good at the cafe, and we got to watch a bit of a college football game.

I was going to file this item directly from the cafe booth, but the waitress said no one on the weekend night crew knew the Wi-Fi password.

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