Democrats have completely erased the voter registration advantage Republicans held this summer in Iowa.
“Their lead didn’t evaporate as much as we focused on registering Iowans, to be prepared for the 2012 election,” says Iowa Democratic Party chairwoman Sue Dvorsky.
Last June, Republicans held a strong advantage, with about 21,000 more registered Republican voters than Democrats. But the latest report from the Iowa Secretary of State’s office shows that on December 1, there were about 5,000 more registered Democrats than Republicans in Iowa. Dvorsky says the party’s effort to identify and register new voters worked.
“It is clear that when the book is written on this campaign both here in Iowa and in the country — and it goes all the way back into the Republican Caucuses — that organization and field work on the ground is still a best seller here in Iowa,” Dvorsky says. “Rick Santorum would tell you that from their Caucus experience and it goes right on through to last month’s election.”
The only statewide race in Iowa was the contest between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, but Dvorsky says there were four “extremely” competitive congressional contests and a number of close races for seats in the Iowa House and Senate.
“The campaigns were coordinated. They were well-coordinated,” Dvorsky says of Democratic candidates. “They covered every single corner of the state.”
The latest report shows nearly 13,000 more Iowans registered as Democrats in the closing days of the 2012 campaign. Dvorsky says many of those were Iowans who registered as Democrats on Election Day, as Iowa has “same-day” voter registration.
Still, “no party” or independent voters are the majority in Iowa, with more than 722,000 Iowans chosing to vote, but not ally with a party. There are now nearly 641,000 active Democrats in Iowa and over 636,000 Republicans.