Election 2020:

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Iowa Voter Guide

Monday, July 6, is the first day you can submit a request for an absentee ballot in Iowa to vote in this fall's general election to your county auditor. Republicans have tried this legislative session to create new barriers to voting by mail, but Iowans can overcome those barriers and still vote safely by mail from home.

Here is a link where you can download an absentee ballot request form: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/electioninfo/absenteeinfo.html.

Please print it off, and mail it to your county auditor

Iowa General Election

Nov 3, 2020

Early Voting: Not available
In-Person Absentee Voting: Oct 5, 2020 - Nov 2, 2020
Deadline to Request an Absentee Ballot:
Fri Oct 24, 2020
Deadline to Return Completed Absentee Ballot:
Tue Nov 3, 2020 9:00PM CST

Iowa Voter Guide

 

Who Can Register to Vote?

Registrant eligibility requirements:

 

In order to register to vote in Iowa, a person must:

  • be a U.S. citizen,
  • be an Iowa resident,
  • be at least 17 years old (and must be 18 years old by Election Day to vote),
  • not have been convicted of a felony (unless their voting rights have been restored after application to the Governor’s office),
  • not be judged mentally incompetent to vote by a court, and
  • not claim the right to vote in any other place.

 

Updating voter registration information:

Am I Registered to Vote?

If you are not registered to vote in Iowa, learn how to pre-register

  • Iowa voters can update their voter registration information online if they have an Iowa driver’s license or identification card and a social security number.
  • Iowa voters who are unable to update their registration information online can submit a paper form to their county auditor or commissioner of elections.
  • Voters who have moved within the same county may also report a change of address on Election Day at their polling place. They must present a current and valid photo ID, utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check, or other government document showing their name and address. Know the requirements to register to vote on election day
  • Voters who have moved to a different county may register to vote in the polling place for their new address on Election Day. Learn how to update your registration
  • If a voter says they’re already registered and only need to update their information, you may wish to advise the person that the new application form will be treated as an update to their old registration
  • Restoring Voter rights
  • Find answers to frequently asked questions
  •  

 

 

Registration Forms

 

Voter registration forms:

  • You may use either an Iowa state form
    • You may photocopy blank forms.
    • Contact your county auditor or the Secretary of State to request additional copies of the Iowa state form.
  • Iowa residents can also register to vote  online if they have an Iowa driver’s license or identification card and a social security number.

Rules for conducting a voter registration drive:

  • Iowa does not impose any restrictions on who can assist with voter registration efforts, nor does it require organizations to submit any paperwork before beginning a voter registration drive. 
  • You may use either Iowa state form 
    • You may photocopy blank forms.
    • Contact your county auditor or the Secretary of State to request additional copies of the Iowa state form.
  • Do not fill in missing information or make corrections on a registration form without the consent of the person registering to vote.  Review the completed form while the registrant is still with you (and be sure they have checked the boxes answering the questions about their citizenship and age), so you can ask them to correct any errors or omissions before you take the form.
  • You must submit all applications that you receive within seven days, except that applications you receive within three days before the voter registration deadline must be submitted within 24 hours.
  • Deliver completed registration forms to the voters’ county auditor or commissioner of elections.
  • Do not pay anyone based on the number of voter registration forms they collect.
  • Do not offer any form of compensation or other incentive to potential registrants for completing a voter registration form.
  • You can find additional information about conducting voter registration drives in Iowa at the Secretary of State’s website.

 

 

Voting Requirements and Elections

What to take with you on election day

  • Now voters who don’t have ID (or an attestor) have to do a PROVISIONAL ballot, and have until noon Monday after the election to bring the appropriate ID to their auditor.
  •  Iowa voters are required to show one of the following forms of identification at the polls before they vote:

 

  • Iowa Driver’s License (not expired more than 90 days)
  • Iowa Non-Operator ID (not expired more than 90 days)
  • U.S. Passport (not expired)
  • U.S. Military ID or Veteran ID (not expired)
  • Iowa Voter Identification Card (must be signed)
  • Tribal ID Card/Document (must be signed, with photo, not expired)

An Iowa Voter Identification Card is provided automatically by the county auditor to each voter who does not have either an Iowa driver’s license or non-operator ID. If you have a question about the Iowa Voter Identification Card, or if you need to request a replacement, contact your county auditor.

A voter without one of the above forms of ID may have the voter’s identity attested to by another registered voter in the precinct or may prove identity and residence using Election Day Registration documents.

 

  • Under federal law, first-time voters who do not register to vote in person and who did not submit identification with their registration application are required to do so at the polling place or to provide a photocopy of their identification with their ballot if voting for the first time by absentee ballot.  
    • Acceptable forms of ID for this purpose include a photocopy of a valid photo ID, a current utility bill, a bank statement, a paycheck, a government check, or some other form of government document that shows their name and current address.
    • If your name is not on the list of registered voters, you may register to vote at the polls on Election day and vote a regular ballot.
    • If you do not have the proper forms of ID to register on Election Day, or if someone challenges your right to vote on Election day, you may cast a provisional ballot.
    • The envelope has a place for you to explain why you believe that the ballot should count. Before you leave the polls, you will be given a written notice explaining your voting rights and listing the date on which the special ballot board will meet. If your ballot is not counted, you will receive a letter in the mail explaining why it cannot be counted.
    • Provisional ballots are counted the Thursday after Election Day
●  Provisional Voting

 

Absentee Voting

Any registered voter in Iowa may request an absentee ballot through their county auditor.

 

Voted absentee ballots cannot be delivered to the polling place on election day. If you have not returned your absentee ballot on election day, you have the following options:

  1. Deliver your voted absentee ballot to the county auditor's office before the polls close on election day,
  2. Surrender your voted absentee ballot at the polls and vote a regular ballot, or
  3. Vote a provisional ballot at the polls if you cannot surrender your voted absentee ballot

 

Early Voting

In-person Absentee Voting is available in Iowa beginning 40 days before an election. Voting takes place in the county auditor's office.

You may vote absentee in-person until the day before Election Day, unless polling places open at noon on Election Day. In that case, you may vote absentee in-person from 8am-11am on Election Day.

 

Important Dates and Deadlines

  • General Election: November 3, 2020 - Polls open 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Absentee ballots may be delivered to the county auditor until 9 PM.
  • October 5: First day of absentee voting for general election
  • October 19: Worry-Free postmark date for the general election
  • October 24: Pre-registration deadline for general election
  • November 2: Absentee ballot in-person deadline for general election
  •  

▪        Iowa offers Election Day Registration and Voting. More information is available at the Secretary of State’s website.

  • Absentee Ballot Deadlines:

▪        Absentee ballots must be requested no later than Oct. 24, 2020 at 5 p.m.

▪        You can return your voted absentee ballot by mail. Absentee ballots received in the county auditor's office by the time the polls close on election day are eligible for counting. Absentee ballots received after the polls close on election day must be postmarked by the Monday before election day or earlier and received in the county auditor's office no later than noon on the Monday following the election.

▪        Iowa has specific rules in regards to absentee voting. More information is available at the Secretary of State's website.