The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, March 5, 2004


Heard Around Town What issue most affects your ballot for president?

Have you ever wondered who bothers to vote in the Massachusetts primary election? Let's face it, by this time, other states have virtually determined the identity of the candidate who will represent each of the two major political parties. With the temperature just over freezing and the clouds threatening rain, it's easy to postpone or avoid voting altogether.

Not so, at least for the ten citizens that I interviewed early Tuesday morning for the Mosquito. By their very presence, the ten Carlisleans reinforced their belief in the right to vote. The citizens included six unenrolled voters, two Democrats, one Republican, and one Independent. It's an interesting trend to find so many unenrolled voters — is this more proof that people are disenchanted with the party system? Or do people like to feel free to vote the presidential ballot they can most influence that year?

I asked people why they were at Town Hall, and what issue was most important to them in selecting the next president. Unenrolled voter Mike Quayle, Old East Street, came to vote in the presidential primary, and believes key issues are "trade policies and the economy." Democrat Nancy Rovin of Tophet Road put the economy as her top concern. Of her presence, she said, "It's time to vote. It's very important that we make our opinions known even though it seems like Kerry has a big lead."

By now, you've seen the tallies of the Carlisle ballots. Perhaps the most impressive result of all is how many people in town are committed to contributing to the process.

Charles Davis, Judy Farm Road (unenrolled) "It's election day. It's important to vote."
Issue: "Budget deficit."
Kevin Bergquist, Lowell Street (unenrolled) "The presidential primary brought me here today."
Issue: "Foreign affairs."
Sandy McIlhenny, Monroe Hill (Independent) "It's my duty to vote." Issue: "The economy."
Dan Cook, Cross Street (Republican)"It's my civic duty to vote."
Issue: "Energy and water policies."
Steve Tobin, Partridge Lane (unenrolled) "I always vote."
Issue: "Beating Bush."
Mark Struss, School Street (unenrolled)
"The sign in the center of town brought me here!"
Issue:"The economy and jobs."
John Caffrey, Russell Street (unenrolled) "I wanted to make a statement."
Issue: "International issues."
Carolyn Copp, Craigie Circle (Democrat) "The Presidential primary."
Issue: "Anyone but Bush."

2004 The Carlisle Mosquito