Monday, August 13, 2012 By Aaron Brown
I need precinct results. These are normally reported through a process with the Secretary of State's office and then posted online at the SOS website. This system is remarkably good for the amount of votes that are counted across Minnesota. But the Range and Duluth are notoriously slow at reporting those results and there is often a lag in determining who wins close elections up here.
That's why I'm proposing the following: The first six people to provide substantive information in the 8 p.m. hour about local precinct results in HD-6B and/or MN-8 will receive a free, signed copy of my book "Overburden: Modern Life on the Iron Range." I will either make the inscription out to you, portraying you as a great election night hero, swelling your pride and those of your august decedents. Or I will make it out as a gift to someone in your life, thus saving you having to buy them a present. Christmas is coming. Be ready.
I don't want random willy-nilly stuff. I'd like to know what I can count on. So if you'd like to do this, here's what I need.
- Send me an e-mail at email@example.com. Subject line: I AM A PRECINCT REPORTER
- Include your real, full name and where you are from (unless I already know you). I will recognize all individuals who help on the blog unless you indicate you wish to remain anonymous. But I need to know who you are privately if you want to receive the bounty.
- Tell me which precinct or precincts you can cover. You may cover your own precinct or one nearby that we determine to be of higher value. I am especially interested in east Range cities, Duluth precincts, Brainerd, Grand Rapids, towns *like* Cambridge or North Branch (or nearby). But I'm open to what's convenient as well.
- I'm asking you to be at the election site as the polls close so you can request the raw read-out of the precinct data. I'm interested in MN-8 (DFL) and House 6B (both DFL and GOP).
- You can then e-mail me the information immediately or, if that's not possible, I can give you my phone number via e-mail beforehand. I would like to be reporting precincts before 8:30 if at all possible.
Bonus books and random MinnesotaBrown swag (things found in my house) to those who provide fast, multiple precinct reports. There really is only one place where I can get this information: existing campaign personnel willing to mole for me. I KNOW YOU READ THIS, STAFFERS! Your anonymity will be protected and nothing will be done to harm your candidate (that isn't already being done to them by the voters, those bastards). Or if you don't want to be anonymous I'll say something extra nice about you on Twitter. For example: "@minnesotabrown: The NAME NAMEY campaign's victory/defeat can be/cannot be attributed to the sharp political work done by YOUR NAME HERE."
My publisher has OK'd a giveaway of six books, so that's all I can promise (first-come, first-served) but I will try to ensure that everyone who helps is recognized somehow.
Seriously, I am at MinnesotaBrown World Headquarters in Balsam Township. My children are all single-digits. To cover the election I need to be at my computer, but also near home. I need eyes, or the beast starves. I don't make enough money to pay people, so I will instead use the
And hey, don't forget that Overburden is a handy field guide for any politics or history-minded person about the wonderful, often confounding world of the Iron Range. It won the Northeastern Minnesota Book Award for Creative Nonfiction in 2009 and it's written in such a way as to transcend the subsequent global economic collapse. It's bust-resistent and boom-friendly, just like the Range. Seriously, if you at all enjoy the blog you'll enjoy the book more. It's funny and thoughtful and the reason I have kept up the blog.