Official “points” 6/21/2022 and direction 6/9/2022 | Office of Iowa Secretary of State

From: Widen, Molly <>

Sent: Tuesday, June 21, 2022 10:57 AM
To: Widen, Molly
Subject: RE: Cast Vote Record

Good Morning Auditors, Deputies and Staff:

Thank you for your patience as our office learned more about this request. Our office would ask that you work with your County Attorney to respond to the requester.

Below are some points our office would encourage you to share with your County Attorney as they assist you in authoring your response:

  1. In Iowa, a “cast vote record” as it is defined by the requester is not generated in the course of conducting an election.
  2. Iowa’s election laws do not require the creation and preservation of a “cast vote record” as it is defined by the requester in the course of conducting an election.
  3. Iowa Code §50.12 makes it very clear that voted ballots, and therefore any report that contains information on how individual ballots were cast, are allowed to be opened and viewed “only for an official recount authorized by section 50.48, 50.49, or 50.50, for an election contest held pursuant to chapters 57 through 62, to conduct an audit pursuant to section 50.51, or to destroy the ballots pursuant to section 50.19.” An open records request filed pursuant to Iowa Code chapter 22 is not one of the reasons enumerated in Iowa Code §50.12 for which information related to individual ballots may be viewed.

Please let me know if you have any additional questions.


Molly M. Widen

Legal Counsel

Office of the Iowa Secretary of State

Office: (515) 281-5864

Mobile: (515) 210-4634

Email: molly.widen

From: Widen, Molly [SOS]
Sent: Thursday, June 9, 2022 4:47 PM
To: Widen, Molly [SOS] <>
Subject: Cast Vote Record
Importance: High

Good Afternoon Auditors, Deputies and Staff:

It has come to my attention that many, if not all, of you have received an email requesting the “Cast Vote Record” for your County from the 2020 General Election.

Our office is reviewing this request, and will provide you with more information as soon as it is available.

While you await additional information, do not fulfill this alleged “sunshine request.”

If you have any additional questions, please reach out to me directly.


Molly M. Widen – Legal Counsel

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