This is the second paper in a series examining aspects of voting in Iowa. This short paper takes a look at Iowa’s turnout in presidential and midterm elections since 2000.
Turnout for voters registered as Democrats or Republicans is quite good, but turnout for No Party voters (Iowa’s name for independents) is much lower. Republican turnout in the period examined is always higher than that of Democrats, but with only one exception the two track fairly closely. Consistent with conventional wisdom turnout is much lower in midterm election years. The drop for Democrats and Republicans is roughly 15%, but is over 25% for No Party voters. Despite the lower turnout of No Party voters they tend to determine the outcome of Iowa elections because of the near parity of voters in the two major parties. As a group, the No Party voters seem willing to swing from one party to the other depending on the election, but also seem to have a tendency to support Democrats a bit more.
Journal Article Version
© 2013 Timothy M. Hagle