How-To Guide for Voting

By IYWP Interns Kelsey Foster & Kelsey Borbeck

Next month on November 3rd, it will officially be election day! An election in its entirety can be very confusing, but we want to make sure that everyone is confident in themselves and their knowledge as a voter!


This year we will be nominating the 46th President of the United States, who will serve from 2020-2024. Our nominees running for this presidential term are:

Republican Party:President Donald Trump is running for re-election with his VP Mike Pence.

Democratic Party:Joe Biden is running as the Democratic nominee with his running mate Kamala Harris.

Libertarian Party: Jo Jergensen was nominated by her party with her running mate Spike Cohen.

Green Party:Howie Hawkins was nominated to run for President alongside his running mate Angela Nicole Walker.

Although the media doesn’t talk as much about the other parties, you can vote for any of these people!


When Does it Start?

The presidential election can begin 2 years before the official election season, and that starts with the primaries! Iowa is the first state to start the primary event, which is the Republican and Democratic caucuses, in which the state picks one candidate from each party to run for president. Our caucus took place on February 3rd, 2020 and the final caucus for our country took place in Connecticut on August 11th, 2020.


How Can I Vote?

In order to vote, you need to register! Even if you voted in the previous election or voted in the caucus, you still need to register to vote for the Presidential election! You can register to vote through November 3rd 2020 at your polling location, but it helps to register early! You can register to vote online using this link.

Or you can print off a registration form and send it to your county auditor’s office. Follow this link.

In order to register to vote, you will need either a valid form of ID (Iowa driver’s license, non-operator ID, US passport, tribal ID card/document, US military or veteran ID, or a Iowa voter ID card) or your social security number. 

If you’ve recently changed your address: When voting at the polls, if your form of ID doesn’t have your current address on it, you need to bring proof of address.

Early Voting

Early voting started on October 5th! It is recommended that you vote early if you are able. Voting before November 3rd will prevent you from waiting in long lines, lower your risk of contracting COVID-19 on that day, and ensures that you have enough time to make it to the polls! If you’re in the Iowa City area, you can vote at 913 S. Dubuque St. Iowa City, IA. Or you can find your satellite location by clicking this link


Voting doesn’t have to be an overwhelming and intimidating experience, and we hope that this article helps to ease any of the election-related stress many are feeling, especially first-time voters. Voting is a monumental and historical experience that everyone gets to be a part of every four years and we at the IWYP encourage you to vote!

A special thank you to our Director Mallory Hellman for providing us with much of the information used in this post!

If you want to learn more, or check out our sources, follow these links:

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