Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Most Popular Blog Posts of the Year: You're not entirely sick of politics

Posted By on Wed, Dec 26, 2012 at 2:10 PM

All week we'll be counting down the end of 2012 by counting down the Indy's top five blog posts of the year. It's a pretty big deal, we know, and that's why we're stringing it out over five days.

Without any further ado, here's No. 4:

Two Election Day posts generated enough traffic to rank in the fourth spot of this list. One was an ongoing wrap-up of results, ranging from the day-after announcement of Jon Tester's win in the hotly contested U.S. Senate race to a former local's pivotal role in President Obama's reelection.

Here's what you need to know as you pull yourself together this morning:

- Obama lost Montana, but won the general election handily. In his acceptance speech, he thanked his campaign team and volunteers by calling them the best in history. That team includes Jim Messina, a former UM student and Sen. Max Baucus chief of staff who served as Obama's campaign manager.

- Obama also thanked those who waited in long lines to vote and noted, "By the way, we have to fix that." In Missoula, there were reports of voters waiting several hours to cast a ballot, and lines remained at the Elections Office past 11 p.m.

The other post came in before voting booths closed and involved a Flathead County election judge with a particularly colorful—and illegally parked—rig. Matthew Frank wrote:

Flathead County Election Administrator Paula Robinson confirmed that the election judge drove the truck to the polling place, but she wasn't sure if he actually owned it. Initially, she said, a complaint alleged that the truck was parked within 100 feet of the entrance of the polling place, which is against the law. By the time she sent a staffer to tell the election judge to move the truck, he already had, she said.

"Certainly for me, in hiring election judges," Robinson said, "there isn't anything that states that they can't drive a vehicle and park it 100, 200 feet away from a polling place with a political sign on it....And so at this point, I guess it's more of an ethical question. Who am I to determine, if it's not within statute, whether he's ethically right or wrong?

While these political posts generated the most traffic, they were just two of many from a contentious election year. In-house favorites included Montana's contribution to the dubious history of debating empty chairs and an incident that involved a Tester "tracker" getting knocked down at a campaign event. The latter introduced one of our 2012 heroes, the "Don't Cry" guy.

Check back tomorrow for No. 3 in our Best Blog Posts of 2012 countdown.

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