From the Associated Press/Chicago Tribune:

Democrats have opened a wide gap in voter registration in Iowa, more than quadrupling their lead over Republicans.

State election officials say registered Democrats lead registered Republicans in Iowa by more than 111,000. There are more than 710,400 registered Democrats and just over 599,000 registered Republicans. That compares to a margin of 27,000 in December 2007.

With Gov. Chet Culver up for re-election in 2010, strategists for both parties are already looking at the numbers.

Culver says the edge in voter registration says a lot about Democrats’ ability to govern effectively and the support the party has among the state’s voters.

Republicans blame the surge in Democratic registration on a national climate that saw President-elect Barack Obama begin his drive to the White House.