A sample of the new voter ID card.

There are nearly two million registered voters in Iowa today. The Iowa Secretary of State says there have never been more registered voters in Iowa at the start of an election year.

The exact tally is 1,993,334. About 36 percent of those registered voters are so-called “independents.” It means they’ve checked “no party” on their voter registration. About 33 percent of registered Iowa voters are Republicans and about 30 percent are Democrats. Not quite 9700 Iowans registered as Libertarians.

The first phase of Iowa’s new voter identification law just took effect. Last month, the secretary of state sent more than 123,000 voter ID cards to Iowans who have been registered to vote, but a cross-check of DOT records indicated they do not have a valid driver’s license or state-issued photo ID.

Iowans will have to show their voter registration card or some sort of photo ID that has an expiration date on it in order to cast a ballot in the 2018 elections. People who do not have a photo ID or voter registration card with them may cast a provisional ballot on Election Day, but the ballot won’t be counted if they fail to go to their county auditor’s office within a few days and show their ID.