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Iowans pick Minnesota as favorite neighbor

Associated Press

Did you hear the one about Iowans who like Minnesota?

But this time, it's no joke. A new Iowa Poll shows that Minnesota is the border state Iowans like most.

Thirty-two percent of respondents said "Minnesota's image and the state's residents make it our favorite neighbor," according to the poll printed Wednesday by the Des Moines Register.

Missouri came in second, picked by 16 percent of Iowans as their border favorite, followed by Wisconsin (15 percent), Illinois (12 percent), and Nebraska and South Dakota (8 percent each). Nine percent answered "none" or "not sure."

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The poll of 800 people has a margin of sampling error of 3.5 percentage points. It was taken June 21-26.

John Edman, director of the Minnesota Office of Tourism, said he was pleased but not surprised by the state's favorable ranking.

"Iowa is certainly one of our target states for marketing," Edman said. "The lakes, the woods, the big city -- we have a lot that Iowa doesn't have to offer, and they gravitate naturally to what's close by."

When asked to identify their "least favorite" border state, 20 percent of the Iowans surveyed named Missouri, followed by 19 percent each for Nebraska and Illinois and 10 percent for South Dakota.

Minnesota was least-liked by 7 percent. Only Wisconsin, at 4 percent, did better.

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