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Absentee ballot request deadline approaches on Saturday in Iowa

Published: Oct. 20, 2020 at 5:53 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Absentee ballot request forms must be in the hands of county auditors by this Saturday.

The requests, by Iowa law, must be turned in by 5:00 p.m. on the day 10 days before the general election. For 2020, that falls on Saturday, October 24.

As of Tuesday, a record 827,572 ballot request forms have been received. This compares to an overall request total of more than 693,000 in the 2016 election, and just 422,000 through October 20, 2016.

814,546 of those requests have been processed with ballots sent to voters, and 570,908 ballots have been returned to county auditors. At least half a million Iowans have cast ballots using early, in-person voting.

In 2016, 647,152 voters cast ballots absentee, with another 934,219 showing up on election day. Turnout statewide was 72.77%, according to the Iowa Secretary of State’s office.

Paul Pate, Iowa’s Secretary of State, said that none of the county auditors have indicated to him that they’re concerned about meeting the deadline for processing absentee ballots by election night.

“By encouraging early voting, it’s also giving our county auditors time to ramp up and make sure they have adequate staff and equipment to process those absentee ballots. We extended the processing time so they can start working on those a little earlier," Pate said.

Those results, along with early voting results, will be the first we’ll see once polls close on November 3.

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