U of M political science department hosts voters forum

- 60 voters from seven metro-wide counties got together at the University of Minnesota Saturday for a political discussion.

The group was selected based on candidate choice and demographics, as the organizers wanted the sample to reflect the makeup of the metro.

Political Science professor Dan Myers organized the forum, and had his students moderate the small group discussions.

“The end result will be a list of what Twin Cities voters thought were the best reasons to support Trump and the best reasons to support Clinton,” he said. “But the other broad goal is—maybe I can talk with someone who doesn’t agree with my on politics and maybe that conversation doesn’t have to be yelling or screaming and unfriending people on Facebook.”

The presidential race between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump has been notoriously hostile, with the candidates exchanging insults regularly.

The relationship among voters has also been heated at times. A Trump supporter punched a protester at a North Carolina Rally in September, and Trump supporters in California got assaulted outside a campaign event.

But the event at the school Saturday was respectful and calm.

“I wanted a safe environment where I could get information, give information, share feedback in a civilized manner,” said Phyllis Thomas of Bloomington.

Thomas is voting for Hillary Clinton, but like others there she said she enjoyed hearing the different viewpoints.

“It’s stimulating and it forces me to re-examine my own ideas,” said Trump supporter William Marshall. “I think it’s really informative to listen to others in a civil manner.”

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