1026-VoteButton-RedIt seems to have been pre-determined months ago that Missouri would again vote Republican in next week’s presidential election, but many can remember the days in which Missouri was known as a “bell weather” state – a state which voted for the elected President of the United States in every election from 1904 to 2004.

What a difference 12 years makes.

As Southern Boone voters make their way to the polls next week – and a large turnout is predicted – political watchers will be interested to see which way Boone County votes.

There is no doubt, however, in the past quarter-century, Missouri has become a more politically conservative state. And Boone County has followed that trend – somewhat.

“It seems that 25 or 30 years ago, you couldn’t find a Republican north of Hallsville,” said Boone County Clerk Wendy Noren, “but now you can’t find a Democrat up there if you looked all week.”

Noren said Boone County earned its reputation as “Little Dixie” by the way it voted in the last half of the 20th century.

However, while Noren says northern Boone County and Southern Boone County have voted on the Republican side in recent elections, the larger voting population of Columbia has tended to carry the county – which is the reason why Boone County was one of only three counties to vote for Pres. Obama in the 2012 election (39,782 votes to Romeny’s 37,343 votes).

That is not a surprise to two Southern Boone voters – a conservative and a liberal – who say they have voted on both sides of the ticket.

~ Get the rest of this story in today’s Journal ~

By Bruce Wallace