For the second time this year, voters in a college town will elect a new Iowa lawmaker when most students are not on campus. Governor Kim Reynolds announced today that the special election in House district 46, covering part of Ames, will take place on Tuesday, August 6.
The College and Young Democrats of Iowa quickly denounced the decision: “Anyone else having some déjà vu with the timing of this special election? @KimReynoldsIA is once again denying students – many who will not be on campus until late Aug. – the chance to vote in the IA House district they heavily occupy.”
Whereas Reynolds clearly tried to suppress student and faculty voting by scheduling the Senate district 30 special election during the University of Northern Iowa’s spring break, the timing of the coming vote in Ames is arguably consistent with standard Iowa practice.
However, the governor could have and should have set the date a few weeks later, allowing greater participation by Iowa State University stakeholders.