Nine percent of registered voters turned out for Iowa primary

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June 28, 2012


By Greg Janetka

Des Moines, Iowa: On June 5, voters in Iowa decided what the general election ballot would look like for 4 U.S. House, 26 state Senate and 100 state House races. The recently completed certified results show that those races were determined by 9.1 percent of all registered voters, which is down from 2008.[1]

Contested Primaries in Iowa -- June 5, 2012
U.S. House
(4 seats)
State Legislature
(126 seats)
Total Democratic Contested Primaries 1 (25%) 10 (7.94%)
Total Republican Contested Primaries 2 (50%) 36 (28.57%)

Republicans turned out at a higher percentage than Democrats - 20.3 percent and 8.7 percent, respectively. Secretary of State Matt Schultz (R), who also acts as commissioner of elections, said he expects to have a high turnout in the November election.[1] Most believe the higher turnout among Republicans has to do with the fact that there were 38 contested Republican primaries, as opposed to only 11 contested Democratic primaries.

Prior to June 5, a total of 190 U.S. House seats had held primaries. At that point, 61.58% of possible primaries had been contested. Iowa's contested figure of 37.50% (3 of 8 possible party primaries) was less competitive than the national average. On the legislative side of things, there were 46 races with at least two candidates on the ballot. The 18.25% figure of total contested state legislative primaries in Iowa was also lower than the national contested average of 22.84% for states that had had filing deadlines.

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