Officials from Iowa’s two major political parties predict huge voter turn-out today. Gentry Collins is deputy chairman of the Republican Party of Iowa. “It’ll be very large because people are very interested in this race,” Collins says. “Frankly, both parties’ bases are very highly-motivated.” Gordon Fischer, the chairman of the Iowa Democratic Party, says the ball on Election 2004 was tipped when there was near-record turn-out for the Democratic Party Caucuses in January. Fischer says there’s been a record number of absentee ballots cast for today’s election, another indicator. “Everything shows an incredibly, incredibly high turn-out,” says Fischer. Both parties claim supremacy in get-out-the-vote efforts. Fischer says the Democratic Party in Iowa started months ago to spur early voting. The party has had over 400 paid staff members out on the streets, and Fischer says those Democratic Party employees have knocked on about a million doors in Iowa since June. Republicans did not target early voting. Collins, the deputy chairman at Iowa G-O-P headquarters, says most republicans are Election Day voters, and his party focused on motivating people to get to their polling place today. Collins says 25-thousand republican volunteers went door-to-door this weekend and visited five-hundred thousand households. Collins says it’s part of the G-O-P strategy to find new republican and republican-leaning voters. It’s been 20 years since Iowa went for the republican running for President.
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