Iowa Redistricting Process

Congressional and Legislative

Congressional and legislative maps are enacted by the State General Assembly. The Governor can veto the plans.

The General Assembly can override a veto with a two-thirds vote. No party currently has a veto-proof majority in either chamber.

Maps are proposed to the General Assembly by the Legislative Services Agency. A five-member advisory commission, the Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission does not draw maps but instead conducts hearings on maps created by the Legislative Services Agency. The four party leaders in the Iowa General Assembly each appoint one member. A fifth member is chosen by the four original members. Commissioners must be eligible electors in the state (a person who possesses all of the qualifications necessary to entitle the person to be registered to vote, whether or not the person is in fact so registered), and may not hold partisan public office or political party office, be related to or employed by a member of the Iowa General Assembly or the U.S. Congress, or be employed by the General Assembly or the U.S. Congress.

When a redistricting bill reaches the Iowa General Assembly, the Commission holds no less than three public hearings in different regions of the state. Based on the hearings, the Commission provides a summation of the material and testimonies to the Secretary of State and Chief Clerk of the Iowa House within 14 days of the arrival of the bill in the Iowa General Assembly.

Challenges to the maps are litigated in the State Supreme Court.

Source: Iowa Const. art. III, §§ 34-36. Iowa Code §§ 42.1-42.7 (2019).

Ballot Measure Process

Kinds of Ballot Measures
Only the Iowa General Assembly may refer amendments to the ballot. There is no initiative or referendum process.

Source: Iowa Const. art. X.

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