Get Out the Vote!

by Amy Beck

Election Day is around the corner.  Do you have a voting plan?

EDITORIAL: Safe voting - The Monitor

Polling Place.  Do you know where to vote?  If not, confirm your polling place here.

Voting Times.  Polls will be open from 7:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m. statewide.

Voter Registration.  Are you registered to vote?  If so, great work!  You can skip this section.  If not, do not worry.  Iowa allows same day voter registration.  Here is what you will need to do:

  • Go to your correct polling place for your current address on election day.
  • At the polling place, you must prove both who you are and where you live. The best way to do this is with your valid Iowa driver’s license with your current address printed on it.

If you do not have an Iowa driver’s license, you may use a photo ID that is current, valid, and contains an expiration date.  The following are acceptable IDs:

  • Iowa non-operator ID
  • Out-of-state driver’s license or non-operator ID
  • ID card issued by an employer
  • Student ID issued by an Iowa high school or college
  • Tribal ID card/document

If your photo ID does not contain your current address, you may use another document (paper or electronic format) to prove where you live if it contains your name and current address and is current within the last 45 days.  The following are acceptable proofs of residence:

  • Residential lease
  • Utility bill (including a cell phone bill)
  • Bank statement
  • Paycheck
  • Government check or other government document
  • Property tax statement

Lastly, if you cannot prove who you are and where you live with the documents listed above, a registered voter from your precinct may attest for you.  Both you and the attester will be required to sign an oath swearing the statements being made are true.

Voter ID.  Iowa voters are required to show an Iowa driver’s license or non-operator ID, U.S. passport, U.S. military ID or veterans ID, tribal ID/document, or Iowa voter ID card at the polls before they vote.  A voter without one of the listed forms of identification can follow the attestation process described above.

Voting and Working.  Iowa law allows workers who do not have three consecutive hours off from work while the polls are open to take three paid hours off to vote.  For example, if you work from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., you’re not entitled to time off because the polls are open till 9 p.m. and you have more than three consecutive hours off work to vote.  However, if you’re scheduled from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., you are entitled to time off.  If this applies to you, you must request this time off before Election Day, so do it today!

Voting and Kids.  You can bring your children with you into the voting booth.  This is also a great opportunity to teach your kids about democracy and civic engagement.

Voting Accommodations.  If you need help marking your ballot due to a disability or if you struggle reading English, you may choose any person to help you except your employer, your employer’s agent, or an officer/agent of your union. If you would like help from the precinct election officials on Election Day, two officials (one from each political party) will assist you. You will be asked to sign a form showing you asked for help. If you are not physically able to sign the forms, you can use a rubber stamp or mark to sign. You may also ask for assistance or have someone sign the form on your behalf if it is in your presence and with your permission.

If you are unable to enter the building where the polling place is located because of a disability, curbside voting is available at each precinct. Two precinct election officials, one from each political party, will take voting materials out to you in your vehicle. You can then mark your ballot in your vehicle. If you need to utilize curbside voting, it is a good idea to call the county auditor’s office before you go to the polling place so the county auditor can call ahead and let the precinct election officials know you will be needing assistance voting from your vehicle.




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