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News Briefs

Iowa law allows Election Day voter registration; more

By Associated Press | Nov 06, 2012

DES MOINES — Iowans who want to vote but aren’t registered can cast a ballot under the state’s Election Day registration law.

To take advantage of the law, people should go to their polling place Tuesday. To find a designated polling place, go to the secretary of state’s website at http://sos.iowa.gov.

At the polling place, unregistered voters must prove who they are and where they live. The easiest way to do this is to provide a valid Iowa driver’s license.

Other identification also will be accepted, including a U.S. passport, U.S. military identification or a student identification issued by an Iowa high school or college.

Proof of residence can include a utility bill, paycheck, bank statement or a government document.

A registered voter can vouch for a person but must sign an oath.

 

Parties plan celebrations in Des Moines

DES MOINES (AP) — Both political parties will hold election night parties in downtown Des Moines, but a river will separate the adversaries.

The Republican Party of Iowa will watch returns Tuesday night at the Embassy Suites hotel on the east bank of the Des Moines River.

The Iowa Democratic Party will hold its celebration at the Hotel Fort Des Moines, across the river and eight blocks to the west.

Both events will begin before polls close at 9 p.m.

 

Vote could affect Iowa Supreme Court Justices

DES MOINES (AP) — Four justices are up for retention votes in this election, but attention has been focused on Justice David Wiggins, who was part of a unanimous 2009 ruling that found a state law limiting marriage to between a man and woman violated the Iowa Constitution. In 2010, voters removed three other justices who ruled in that case.

Those supporting Wiggins argue that the retention system is meant to remove judges deemed incompetent or unethical, not because voters don’t like a specific ruling. They say that if voters remove Wiggins, Iowa’s justice system will be tainted as justices may focus more on the political consequences of their rulings.

Those seeking to remove Wiggins counter that he and other justices who ruled in the 2009 case let politics influence their decision, leading them to make a change that should have been left to legislators.

 

Balky voting machines fixed in Dubuque

DUBUQUE (AP) — Balky machines that threatened to disrupt voting at a Dubuque church have been repaired.

The Dubuque Telegraph-Herald reports that the machines broke down soon after the Dubuque County polling station opened at 7 a.m. Tuesday at St. Columbkille Catholic Church.

Voters who couldn’t wait for the repairs filled out their ballots by hand and gave them to poll workers.

The newspaper says the repairs were completed and the machines were back in operation by around 7:45 a.m.

Spokesman Chad Olsen for the Iowa Secretary of State’s Office also reported that Story County had problems with electronic poll books that are used to check in voters. He says poll workers reverted to paper copies, so voting delays were minimized.

 

 

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