ELECTION 2020

Iowa voters set all-time turnout high

Abby Stegemoller, 19, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, checks in before she votes for the first time during voting at the Kirkwood
Abby Stegemoller, 19, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, checks in before she votes for the first time during voting at the Kirkwood Community College Recreation Center in the 2020 election in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, on Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

DES MOINES — Iowa’s 2020 election was one for the record books.

Secretary of State Paul Pate said Iowans broke the all-time turnout record for a general election in the state.

More than 1,697,000 Iowans voted, easily surpassing the previous state record of 1,589,951 set in 2012, according to unofficial results.

More than a million Iowans voted absentee, another record.

As of Wednesday morning, 1,001,840 absentee ballots were received by county auditors. Absentee ballots postmarked by Nov. 2 and received by noon Nov. 9 will be counted.

All results remain unofficial until canvassing is completed and the results are certified on Nov, 30 by the Iowa Executive Council.

“I want to send a big thank you to Iowa voters, poll workers, county election officials, and my staff,” Pate said in a statement Wednesday. “This was an election like no other and everyone stepped up.”

According to the Secretary of State’s office, 76 percent of all registered voters in Iowa participated — one of the highest turnout rates in the nation. On Monday, Iowans set a record for active registered voters at 2,095,581.

“Record turnout during a pandemic is an amazing achievement and overall, the process went very smoothly in Iowa,” added Pate, Iowa’s commissioner of elections. “Also, huge thanks to our state and federal partners for helping us provide safe and secure elections.”

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Every county will now conduct postelection audits in randomly selected precincts to help ensure the integrity of the vote, according to officials.

Comments: (515) 243-7220; rod.boshart@thegazette.com

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