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Iowans to See Rollout of New Voter ID Rules in June Primary


Wednesday, May 2, 2018   

DES MOINES, Iowa - Iowans age 50 and older are the largest single voting bloc, and with the state's primary elections just five weeks away, they're being reminded about a change in voting rules that will be introduced this year and implemented in 2019. The new law requires Iowa voters to bring a form of identification, such as a driver's license, to the polls.

Jeremy Barewin, associate state director for communications and outreach at AARP Iowa, said events being held statewide this month will provide members and guests more information.

"We don't want people going to the polling places not knowing there are new laws and regulations in place as far as what you need to bring to actually go and have your vote cast," he said.

For this year only, people who don't bring identification to the polls on June 5 can still vote, but need to sign an oath verifying their identity.

Registration for the free AARP events can be made with the organization's online site or by calling 877-926-8300. In addition to new voting-rule information, Barewin said AARP events will include discussion about issues that primarily effect those age 50 and older.

"We go out into communities and we talk to people about what questions they should be asking their elected officials," he said. "We talk about some of the issues that are facing older adults, whether it's Medicare or Social Security, prescription drugs, caregiving, guardianship issues and so forth."

Barewin said seniors who don't have an Iowa driver's license or a new state-issued voter ID card have other options for voting, including a military ID, veterans ID or valid passport.

"2018 is more of a trial year," he said. "They really take effect in 2019, and there's also been some changes as far as the number of days in advance you need to file for absentee voting ballots."

Iowa's absentee voting period has been shortened from 40 to 29 days. Republican lawmakers who passed the new voter ID legislation said it will crack down on potential voter fraud.

The new voter law is online at sos.iowa.gov, and more information is at states.aarp.org/region/iowa.

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