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Report: WYO Voters in the Dark About Pres. Candidate Views

November 15, 2007

Cheyenne, WY – Ask a presidential candidate a question about an issue and it's not likely they will answer, according to a new report released today by Project Vote Smart. All 202 candidates running for president were sent a list of voter questions, and about 60 percent refused to answer, including the high-profile candidates. Project Vote Smart's media director, Mike Wessler, says candidates told them they were afraid opponents would use the information against them, and they wanted to have more control over their message. He says Wyoming voters shouldn't buy those excuses.

"While I do understand those concerns, I think they are minor compared to the importance of getting voters information about where candidates stand on these issues."

He says over the past ten years, candidates have been less and less willing to fill out voter questionnaires about issues. This year, Clinton, Obama, Romney, and Giuliani all refused to share their views on issues. He says they've found a money connection.

"We've found that, generally, the campaigns that have the ability to raise the most money are the least willing to put this information out."

To learn more about the new "Presidential Political Courage Test" results, visit www.votesmart.org.

Deborah Smith/John Robinson, Public News Service - WY