Elections in Iowa

The number of elections in Iowa varies from year to year. Presidential elections are held every four years.

Presidential election results[1]
Year Democratic Republican
1976 48.5% 619,931 49.5% 632,863
1980 38.6% 508,672 51.3% 676,026
1984 45.9% 605,620 53.3% 703,088
1988 54.7% 670,557 44.5% 545,355
1992 43.3% 586,353 37.3% 504,891
1996 50.3% 620,258 39.9% 492,644
2000 48.5% 638,517 48.2% 634,373
2004 49.2% 741,898 49.9% 751,957
2008 53.9% 828,940 44.4% 682,379
2012 51.9% 822,544 46.2% 730,617
2016 41.8% 653,669 51.2% 800,983
2020 44.9% 759,061 53.1% 897,672

Since 1972, Iowa has been the first state to vote in presidential primaries, with their caucuses. As with presidential elections, gubernatorial elections are held every four years - but are staggered such that they are held on general elections independently of the presidential election. Members of the Iowa Senate are elected every four years, with half of the Senate elected at each general election; all members of the Iowa House of Representatives are elected every two years. Additionally, elections for various government officials, judicial retention elections, and elections on referenda occur as part of various elections in Iowa.

Electoral systemEdit

Party systemEdit

The Iowa Caucus is an electoral event in which residents meet in precinct caucuses in all of Iowa's 1,681 precincts and elect delegates to the corresponding county conventions.

General electionsEdit

In Iowa, a general election is held on Election Day during even-numbered years. In addition to the elections for the chief executive and legislature of the United States and of Iowa, general elections in Iowa include statewide elections for the Secretary of State, Auditor of State, Treasurer of State, Secretary of Agriculture, and Attorney General. Also included are judicial retention elections and proposed amendments to the Iowa Constitution, along with various local elections.

Local electionsEdit

In Iowa, various local officials are elected at the general election. However, school and city elections are not held during a general election, but at a different regularly scheduled time. Regular school elections are held on the second Tuesday in September during odd-numbered years.[2] Regular city elections are held on Election Day during odd-numbered years.[3]

Special electionsEdit

In Iowa, special elections may be held throughout the year to fill various governmental vacancies or to vote on ballot initiatives. Special elections are generally held on Tuesdays and may not generally be held on the same day as a general or local election.[4]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Leip, David. "General Election Results – Iowa". United States Election Atlas. Retrieved January 29, 2021.
  2. ^ Iowa Code § 277.1
  3. ^ Iowa Code § 376.1
  4. ^ Iowa Code § 39.2(1)

External linksEdit