On Tuesday, March 31st, Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate released details on a program to enable every registered voter in the state of Iowa to participate in the June 2nd primary via absentee ballot.
To increase the safety of voters and poll workers for the June 2nd primary, Secretary Pate will be sending out to every active registered voter in the state of Iowa an absentee ballot request form. Once the voter fills out the form and sends it back in, they will then be sent their ballot for the primary.
“We’ve made it easy to vote, but hard to cheat in Iowa,” Secretary Pate said. “Voter ID is in place at the polls and on absentee ballot requests. We fought for that in the Legislature and in court. The safety of voters during this pandemic is our top priority and the safest way to vote in the June primary will be by mail.”
Do I need to be registered to vote?
Yes. In order to vote, you must be registered. Voters should also update their voter registration to ensure the absentee ballot request form goes to the correct address. Additionally, for the first time, Iowans who are 17 years old and will be 18 by the November 3rd election can vote in the June primary.
Does voter ID still matter?
Yes, Voter ID is the Law. To maintain the integrity of the absentee ballot process, voters are asked to provide their Iowa Voter Identification Card PIN, or Iowa driver’s license number, or non-operator ID number when requesting a ballot. This is done to ensure those who request a ballot are who they claim to be and that individuals only get one vote.
How do I know what ballot I will get?
The voters will determine what ballot they will get. Voters will not automatically receive a ballot. They will automatically receive an absentee ballot request form. On that form, the voter can select which ballot for the primary they would like to receive.
What about postage? Do I need stamps?
The absentee ballot request forms being sent to voters will include prepaid postage for return mailing to your local county auditor’s office. The absentee ballot will include prepaid return postage.
When is this all happening?
The absentee ballot request forms will be sent out in mid to late April. However you don’t need to wait, Iowans can request absentee ballots now through May 22nd
Local county auditors can begin mailing out absentee ballots on April 23rd.
Will the polls till be open?
Yes, but you may find that many polling precincts will be combined at one location.