Early voting down in the state compared to recent midterm elections
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - We are three days away from the election, and early voting numbers are down in Iowa compared to the past two midterm elections.
As of Saturday, 292,000 absentee ballots have been received. That’s down significantly from total absentee ballots in 2018 when 547,000 ballots were received. In 2014, there were more than 469,000.
“Voting is one of the things that you need to participate in democracy and not sit on the sidelines,” Steve Moshier, the Cedar Rapids NAACP’s Political Action Committee Chair and part of the new advocacy group “We Vote Linn County Coalition,” said.
Moshier said the group started out as a group that worked on voter suppression issues for marginalized groups. He said his organization would set up community events and that getting younger voters has been difficult.
“For the younger people, it doesn’t really matter a heck of a lot to them about what you’re saying,” Moshier said. “If they’re going to vote, they’re going to vote.”
The bigger issue, he said, was the changes to voter laws passed in 2021. The law shortened the number of days to vote absentee from 29 days to 20 days, and moved up the timeline to request a ballot.
“Voter laws are set up, so we don’t vote as much or as often,” Moshier said.
Despite the numbers so far, Moshier is optimistic Iowans will make their voices heard whether that’s voting early or voting the day of.
“I’m hoping we’re going to be surprised when it comes to November 8,” Moshier said.
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