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Ask Takes Facts To Election Day

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The Smart Answers team at the Ask search engine have put together some helpful sections for voters seeking more information about the US elections taking place today.

Many voters will be grateful for the respite that comes the day after Election Day, when negative political advertising takes a break until we get closer to the 2008 Presidential elections. We’re anticipating an all-out assault on sensibility when that event nears.

For those of you looking for more information about Election Day, Ask has assembled some Smart Answers to assist. The Smart Answers feature appears atop the search results for a given query and offers details and links to more specific information about the searcher’s issue.

The Ask blog noted how a site visitor can enter the word election into the search engine to trigger the Smart Answer. There they list link to political analysis on key races and issues, and resources for evaluating initiatives and learning about campaign funding.

That last bit can be very instructive. If you look at a given Congressman’s vote on an issue, and then do a funding check at OpenSecrets.org from the Ask link, you shouldn’t be surprised to see political contributions from organizations benefiting from the Congressman’s position on the issue.

The Smart Answer for election also provides a drop-down link to Voter Info by State. When I select Kentucky, I find another Smart Answer about the 2006 Kentucky Elections. We get to vote for our House Representatives this year.

(In WebProNews land, we have a mayor to choose. The mayoral race offers us one of those choices you find in board games that challenge you to pick what you would rather do from a pair of unappealing options. Our picks for mayor can be likened to either selecting a painful rash that itches in one place, or a full-body rash that can’t be concealed from people but doesn’t itch as much.)

A list of resources from Ask would not be complete without a selection of links provided by their Director of Online Information Resources, Gary Price. That list compiled by Shirl Kennedy from ResourceShelf allows voters to learn about candidates’ voting records, special interest group ratings, and other details from Project Vote Smart.

Polls open early in the US. Ask gives even the most uninformed voter enough data to make a reasonably informed choice at the polls, so why not take a look at their Smart Answers and make a smart choice in the voting booth today?


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David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.

Ask Takes Facts To Election Day
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