Voter’s Voices: Mountain Home Seniors Weigh Presidential Candidates

Oct 24, 2012

Joyce Scott sits at the I and A desk at the Mountain Home Senior Center
Credit Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

More than 50 seniors drop in for a free buffet-style lunch on a recent Friday at the Mountain Home Senior Center.  Everyone signs in with Joyce Scott. “I sit at the I and A desk. That’s information and assistance is what this is about.”

Her husband served at Mountain Home Air Force Base.  She worked there too, as a civilian. “I’ve been here 41 years, almost 42 years. We came here with the military, my husband was military. And we’ve been here ever since."

In the last few years, this great grandmother has gotten in politics.  She knows who she plans to vote for. “Obama, of course. I’m definitely a Democrat, especially, especially since I’ve seen Romney around on TV.”

She voted for Obama in 2008 too. “He’s very forthright and forthcoming with anything he’s got to say. I don’t know that he’s ever been caught in a lie. If he has I don’t remember it or didn’t hear about it. Whereas some other people that get on there have definitely been caught in little fabrications.”

The Center’s President, Ruthada Powell, goes over announcements and then calls everyone together for the pledge of allegiance.  At the end, Kenneth Paul Junior adds “… And God bless the troops."

The Mountain Home Senior Center is bustling at lunchtime.
Credit Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

Paul Junior sits near a large American flag tacked to the wall.  He’s a Navy veteran who retired in 1991.  “One of the things I enjoy about living in Mountain Home and the state of Idaho is about 90 percent of our legislators are Republicans. It is a red state and I’m very comfortable with that.”

He says he’s not happy with the last four years, so he plans to vote for Mitt Romney and his running mate Paul Ryan. “Maybe they can take the reins of this runaway horse team that we’ve got and pull it back to the center of the road and get America rolling again.”

He think politicians should do more for veterans and single mothers.  He likes Congressman Mike Simpson and plans to vote for him.  He says he stays informed on the issues and that everyone who votes should do the same.

Kenneth Paul, Jr. is a Navy veteran and a proud Republican. He is happy to live in a red state.
Credit Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

“Well, if you believe in this country and you believe in the stars and stripes and you’re a veteran, if you don’t stay well informed you’re not up to par as far as having the knowledge to make intelligent, informed decisions.”

Most everyone we talked to were Republican.  Only a couple plan to vote Democratic.  That’s not surprising.  In this year’s May Primary in Mountain Home, 370 people voted Democrat.  Close to 2,800 voted Republican. 

The Elmore County Clerk reports more than 10,000 people have registered to vote in November. 

Copyright 2012 Boise State Public Radio