Voting Access Scorecard – The franchise project

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Voting Access Scorecard - Iowa

The Franchise Project’s Voting Access Scorecard ranks how accessible voting is in Iowa. The Voting Access Scorecard measures the accessibility of American elections by analyzing state election laws and practices. Each state’s performance is based on 30 measurable metrics shown to affect accessibility and foster participation. All metrics are weighted equally to fairly assess all states and their practices. If answered in the affirmative, each metric is worth 1 point, for a total of 30 points. Note that if a practice varies by county or municipality, e.g. the number of early voting locations in Wisconsin, the state only received 0.5 points for that metric. Note: Y=Yes, N=No, and V=Varies by Municipality/County.

Currently, Iowa ranks 27. You can make a difference! Take action now!

Overall score: 16 / 30

Y=Yes, N=No, V=Varies by County/Municipality

State registration deadline is the Friday before Election Day or later
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterinformation/edr.html
Y
State offers Election Day registration
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterinformation/edr.html
Y
State has automatic registration
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterinformation/edr.html
N
State does NOT create barriers to voter registration by third parties (e.g. allows third party registration, does not require registration drive training or notification)
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterinformation/edr.html
Y
State does NOT impose fines or criminal penalties for negligent/accidential voter registration mistakes
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterinformation/edr.html
Y
State offers early voting/in-person absentee voting in multiple locations per municipality/county
Satellite absentee voting stations may be established by the county commissioner of elections or by a petition of eligible electors of the jurisdiction conducting the election. Iowa Admin. Code § 721-21.300 (2015): https://www.legis.iowa.gov/docs/iac/rule/02-20-2013.721.21.300.pdf Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/electioninfo/absenteeinfo.html
V
State offers early voting/in-person absentee voting during evenings and/or weekends
Hours determined by local officials. Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/electioninfo/absenteeinfo.html
V
State allows no-excuse early voting/in-person absentee voting
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/electioninfo/absenteeinfo.html
Y
State holds all elections entirely by mail
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/electioninfo/absenteeinfo.html
N
State does NOT require an excuse to vote by mail
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/electioninfo/absenteeinfo.html
Y
State deadline to return absentee ballot is NO earlier than Election Day (via any type of delivery)
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. Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/electioninfo/absenteemail.html
Y
State allows all voters to sign up to vote by absentee permanently
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterinformation/absfaq.html
N
State allows voters to request vote by mail ballot online
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/electioninfo/absenteemail.html
N
State allows voters to register online
Iowa Government: https://mymvd.iowadot.gov/Account/Login?ReturnUrl=%2fVoterRegistration
Y
State allows voters to check their Election Day polling location online
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterreg/pollingplace/search.aspx
Y
State allows voters to check their vote by mail status online
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/absenteeballotstatus/search.aspx
Y
State does NOT require a Photo ID to vote on Election Day
Law currently in effect does not require photo ID, but Governor signed a new voter ID law in 2017, but the new law will permit use of 1 type of non-photo ID, per media reports. Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterinformation/edfaq.html#3 Des Moines Register, http://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/news/politics/2017/04/13/contentious-voter-id-bill-gets-final-ok-heads-branstad/100416752/
N
State does NOT require a Photo ID to vote early or by mail
II IA ST Subt. 1, Ch. 53 - No-excuse in-person absentee voting; nothing in the chapter indicates photo id requirement. Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/electioninfo/absenteemail.html
Y
If ID required, State allows voter to vote through alternative process that does not require voter action (Note: full points received if no ID required at all)
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/electioninfo/absenteemail.html
N
During voter maintenance process, if address has not changed, state allows voter to simply mail back confirmation form
Iowa Code § 48A.27(4)(c)(2): https://www.legis.iowa.gov/law/statutory
Y
State is NOT a member of Interstate Crosscheck
Bryan Caskey, Kansas Secretary of State, Director of Elections (email communication, May 24, 2017)
N
State is Member of ERIC
ERIC, http://www.ericstates.org/whowear John Lindback, ERIC Executive Director (email communication, May 25, 2017)
N
State refused to comply with the Pence-Kobach voter registration data request
Iowa Secretary of State: https://twitter.com/IowaSOS/status/880831481526071300
N
State allows individuals to vote when their sentence is complete
Iowa Code § 48A.6(1): https://www.legis.iowa.gov/docs/code/48A.6.pdf
N
State allows individuals to vote during their term of incarceration
Iowa Code § 48A.6(1): https://www.legis.iowa.gov/docs/code/48A.6.pdf
N
State allows individuals to vote after incarceration, while on probation or parole
Iowa Code § 48A.6(1): https://www.legis.iowa.gov/docs/code/48A.6.pdf
N
State voting technology requires a paper trail
State statutes do not require a paper trail. Note: Iowa Code §52.7 was repealed: https://www.legis.iowa.gov/law/statutory
N
State requires poll worker training
Iowa Code § 49.124: http://law.justia.com/codes/iowa/2016/title-ii/chapter-49/section-49.124
Y
State law requires voting machines to meet federal standards, testing by a federally accredited laboratory, or federal certification
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/pdf/approvedvotingsystems.pdf; https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/votingep/
Y
State provides readily accessible voting technology information
Iowa Secretary of State: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterinformation/edfaq.html
Y

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