© 2021 Boise State Public Radio
NPR in Idaho
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Politics & Government

Idaho's 'Food Truck' Voting At Micron Sparks Complaint

Frankie Barnhill/Boise State Public Radio

Ada County election officials say an early voting location near the Micron campus is appropriate despite concerns raised by GOP gubernatorial candidate Tommy Ahlquist's campaign.

The state's most populous county announced earlier this month officials would park a food truck-inspired voting station outside the company's southeast Boise headquarters on May 8 as part of the county's effort to attract more people to participate in the upcoming May 15 primary election.

However, Ada County Deputy Clerk Phil McGrane said Tuesday he received an informal complaint from Ahlquist questioning the selection of Micron claiming the company had too many ties to fellow GOP gubernatorial hopeful Lt. Gov. Brad Little.

"The integrity of the process is important to protect," McGrane said. "We went through the vetting process and Micron was adamant they don't ask their employees to vote a certain way."

A Micron spokesman didn't immediately return a request for comment.

Micron has donated to political action committees that support Little, but according to 2017 campaign finance reports — the most recent sunshine disclosure forms available — Micron has not donated directly to Little.

McGrane said he contacted Ahlquist's campaign on Friday of the county's decision to park the mobile voting booth.

The campaign has since said their concerns have been eased, said David Johnston, Ahlquist's campaign manager.

Idaho and 36 other U.S. states offer various ways to vote early, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Critics say making early voting easier and more convenient could lead to more fraud. But supporters counter that early voting increases turnout, particularly among minorities.