DES MOINES, Iowa — The Iowa Democratic Party announced 99 satellite caucus locations for voters Wednesday, in part of a party-wide effort to increase participation and accessibility.
“I’m really excited about it and I just think it demonstrates our commitment here to make sure these are the most transparent and successful caucuses we’ve ever had,” IDP chairman, Troy Price, said.
Satellite caucuses will allow Iowa voters to caucus in pre-approved places other than their assigned precinct location. These locations include 71 in-state, 25 out-of-state, 11 combinations with other locations, and 3 international locations.
For out-of-state locations, Price said he hopes to have help from party leaders in other states.
“We’re fortunate we have strong partnership with other state parties,” he said. “We’ve already been in contact with some of them about potentially providing assistance.”
Just like precinct caucuses, each satellite location will have a trained captain who has pledged neutrality and is in charge of oversight and reporting the results. Satellite sites can include nursing homes, factories or any other community gathering places where groups otherwise might have difficulty going to their precinct caucus. Iowans living out of state, like members of the military, will also be able to form their own satellite caucus as well. A full list of the sites can be found here.
Price said the party tested the satellite caucuses in 2016, so he has confidence in the process for 2020.
“That’s the great thing about the caucuses is we get to experiment. We’ll se what happens in 2024,” he said. “We’re obviously gonna study the results after they’re done. We’re alway looking at ways to increase participation and accessibility.”
Satellite caucusgoers who attend an out-of-state satellite site — or an in-state satellite site that takes place before 6pm CST on February 3, 2020 — must be a registered Democrat and complete the online Satellite Caucus Pre-Registration for their satellite caucus by January 17, 2020.