Subscribe for 17¢ / day

More primary voters complained last week about the verbal verification process at the polls than the new photo identification rules, according to Scott County Auditor Roxanna Moritz.

Moritz told the Scott County Board of Supervisors at its meeting Tuesday that many voters objected to having to say their birth date and address out loud to verify their identity, particularly after just having shown their photo ID to the precinct election officials.

Moritz agrees, the process is redundant.

"There's got to be a better way to look at it," she told the supervisors. 

After the board meeting, she said at least 20 people called her office complaining, but she believes even more left the polls mad. 

With the growing prevalence of identity theft, Moritz has concerns about stating personal information out loud.

By law, a voter must now present a photo ID, verify who they are by saying their birth date and address to the poll worker and sign a voter eligibility slip before receiving a ballot. Last year the rules only required they say the month and date of their birth date. 

Moritz has called the Secretary of State's Office to discuss the issue and plans to push for changes with assistance from the Iowa State Association of County Auditors. 

In addition, she said 118 affidavits were signed at the polls. 

"I'm guessing those are silent protests (to the ID requirement)," she said. 

Voters who came to the polls and did not have an ID could sign an affidavit swearing to their identity and then vote.  

Others without an ID or other documentation, also could have an "Attester" — another voter registered in the same precinct — vouch for their identity and residence, or cast a provisional ballot and then produce proof of their identity and residence to the County Auditor's office after Election Day.  

The county board unanimously certified the election's results. A total of 12,225 ballots were cast in the primary with 7,783 Democrats voting, 4,352 Republicans, and 90 Libertarians. 

According to Moritz, the changes are part of a three-year soft rollout — now in its second year — of new voting rules by the state. The primary was the first big test of the state's new ID requirement.  

Given all the new rules and procedures to follow, she said the precinct election officials "did an excellent job." 

But the primary saw only 9.85 percent turnout. At the November general election, "There will be a lot more people and a lot more scenarios," Moritz said, adding poll workers will need additional training. "That's not in my budget." 

"I'm going to need more money for training so when we roll out in November, we are following all the laws for photo IDs," she said afterwards.