DES MOINES, Iowa — Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate announced he is running for re-election at the Polk County Republican Convention on Saturday
In a news release, Pate said he followed through on several of his campaign promises during his time in office, one of those promises was instituting voter ID in the state of Iowa.
The two democrats running against Pate, Deidre DeJear and Jim Mowrer said they disagree with Pate on several issues, including voter ID.
“That addresses an issue that is nearly non-existent, which is voter impersonation. And when you look at the way it was done, Mr. Pate in presenting this legislation refused to accept other acceptable forms of identification like hunting licenses, like fishing licenses, like concealed weapons permits. And when you look at what the intent is behind it, it’s a very narrow piece of legislation that’s intended to make it difficult for certain groups of voters to vote,” Mowrer said.
DeJear said voter ID has already been an issue at polling places
“Polk county just had its first election under the new voter ID rule. Our secretary of state office did not provide our auditors with adequate materials in order to train poll workers and as a result poll workers were confused, press was confused, people voting were confused and as a result people were turned away from the voter process, ” DeJear said.
DeJear said one of her goals, if she were to be elected, is to increase voter turnout, even for smaller elections.
“When we look at the most medial amount of turn out that we get in our school races and our city council races, we can do a better job of getting people involved in the process,” DeJear said.
Mowrer said one of his goals, if he is elected, is to update the business licensing system.
“They’re way out of date. When you look at the other 49 states in this country who have instant online filing, Iowa’s way behind. We need to improve those,” Mowrer said.
Primary election date is June 5 and the general election is November 6.