When the British Broadcasting Corp. decided to explore what voters in the heart of America were thinking about the presidential election, they selected Missouri S&T as the site for a town hall-style forum that was broadcast worldwide on the BBC World Service radio program Newshour.
The forum, held on Sept. 5, featured a panel made up of two U.S. representatives from Missouri (one from each major party) as well as a political science professor and a radio journalist from Springfield, Mo. The BBC’s Robin Lustig served as moderator as audience members questioned panelists on everything from energy policy to the future of education.
“The voters of Missouri are an unusually canny lot,” the BBC reported. “In every single presidential election since 1904 (with just one exception), they have voted for the winning candidate.”
As this magazine went to press, Missouri’s election results were finally made official. By only 0.1 percent, McCain won Missouri, making this the second exception to Missouri’s bellwether status.
Check out the BBC report and audio of the forum online.