Friday is the last day to request an absentee ballot by mail for the June 2 primary. The ballot requests must be received by the auditor’s office in the county where the voter lives by 5 p.m. on May 22.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Iowa Secretary of State’s office mailed absentee ballot request forms to every person listed as an active voter in Iowa in April. Any registered voter who didn’t receive a form, or has misplaced it, can print out a form from the websites of the auditor’s offices in both Johnson County and Linn County.
There’s been tremendous demand for absentee ballots for the June primary. On Tuesday, Johnson County Auditor Travis Weipert tweeted the number of ballot requests his office has received has broken all previous records.
You #JohnsonCounty voter have STEPPED UP to vote safe and vote at home for the 6/2 Primary Election! We have received 22,338 absentee ballot requests which is a new record for requests in ANY election, passing the 20,951 requests made for the 2012 Presidential Election! pic.twitter.com/Fm4xHZ9nZq
— Travis Weipert (@jcauditor) May 19, 2020
And many voters have already completed their ballots and returned them.
Linn County Auditor Joel Miller tweeted on Saturday that his county leads the state in number of voters who have already turned in their absentee ballots.
As of 5/15, 145,756 voted ballots have been returned to the 99 county auditors' offices in the State. Of those, 16,302 are from @LinnCounty voters, i.e., 11.18% of the total. Yet, Linn County contains only 7% of the State's registered voters. Kudos to Linn County's voters!
— Joel D Miller (@lcauditor) May 16, 2020
Miller said he expected the number of mailed-in ballots from Polk County to surpass Linn on Wednesday. Polk has almost twice as many voters as Linn does.
Both Johnson and Linn counties are also offering drive-through early voting — in which voters remain in their cars, while ballots are brought to them — instead of the traditional in-person early voting done in the office.
The drive-through service will be available at the Johnson County Administration Building (913 S Dubuque St in Iowa City) Monday through Friday, from 7:45 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., until Monday, June 1. Voters will also be able to cast ballots on Saturday, May 30, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
In Linn County, drive-through early voting is taking place at 823 3rd St SW, near the Linn County Public Service Center. Hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, until Monday, June 1. The service will also be available on Saturday, May 30, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.