By Dan Linehan
Free Press Staff Writer
MANKATO — Blue Earth and Nicollet counties followed voters statewide in close defeats of two constitutional amendments, one to ban gay marriage and the other to require photo identification to vote.
But within those counties, the votes varied widely.
In Mankato, for example, support for the marriage amendment was at 39 percent. It ranged from 27 percent, in a precinct composed of Minnesota State University dorms, to 48 percent, a downtown-area precinct that includes that neighborhood around the hospital and Bethany Lutheran College.
The vote for photo ID was similar; it was lowest, at 27 percent, in a precinct that includes parts of West Mankato, mostly east of Baker Avenue. It was highest, at 49 percent, in the Mankato neighborhood south of Stadium Road and west of Monks Avenue.
North Mankato’s support for the marriage amendment was at 46 percent; for the voter ID amendment it was 42 percent.
In Nicollet County, support for the marriage amendment was at 47 percent; it was lower than the state for the voted ID amendment, at 41 percent.
Le Sueur County supported the marriage amendment by a 20-vote margin.
Patty O’Connor, elections director for Blue Earth County, was glad that the voter ID amendment, estimated to cost county $600,000 county-wide, was defeated.
“There were too many unknowns,” she said.