Iowa: A Big Mess

IowaAfter over a year of anticipation and countless amounts of rallies and town halls from over 20 candidates, the Iowa caucus is finally over. Twelve hours after caucus sites have closed in the Hawkeye State, a total of zero percent of precincts results have released. The Iowa Democratic Committee initially reported to media outlets such as CNN that the delay in results was due to “quality control.”

However, the committee did not report what exactly quality control meant, but they did say due to 2020 being the first Iowa caucus where the popular vote is scheduled to be released to the public it would take more time to make sure all information is accurate.

Party organizers in charge of reporting precincts results to the DNC have reported that the app designed specifically to make the process easier is to blame for the delay in reporting. According to The New York Times, the issue with the app was not due to the app not working but because the entire system was an “unorganized mess.”

While the Iowa Democratic Committee had three years to plan the caucus, it has been reported that the committee did not train organizers on how to properly use the app. On caucus day many organizers had issues logging into the app; some organizers were not able to download the app to their device.

Problems with the app were not the only issues facing precinct chairs, they reported they could not get in touch in with party leaders via phone to report any of the results. While speaking to Wolf Blitzer during CNN’s coverage of the “Iowa debacle,” Story County precinct chair Shawn Sebastian was hung up on by the Iowa Democratic Party. “They hung up on me. They hung up on me, I’ve got to get back in line,” Sebastian told Blitzer with frustration after being on hold for over an hour.

The lack of reporting did not stop the 2020 hopefuls from taking the stage addressing their supporters. Senators Amy Klobuchar, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and former Vice President Joe Biden took the stage with hopeful messages to their supporters.

Biden declared that his campaign will receive “their fair share of the delegates” while Senator Sanders told his crowd of supporters that he feels “we did really really well tonight”. Former South Bend, Indiana mayor Pete Buttigieg went further than his Democratic rivals proclaiming victory in the Hawkeye State.

While speaking to a crowd of Iowans around midnight on February 4, Buttigieg told supporters “So we don’t know all the results, but we know by the time, it’s all said and done, Iowa you have shocked the nation. Because by all indications, we are going on to New Hampshire victorious.”

While the Iowa Democratic Party has not officially released any numbers, the Sanders campaign has released numbers they received from their own app. The Senator’s campaign released what they say is 40 percent of the caucus results. The numbers they released were very favorable to both Sanders and Buttigieg.

According to the Sanders campaign numbers, the top three candidates were Sanders, Buttigieg, and Warren. The candidates received 28.03 percent, 20.81 percent, and 18.24 percent respectively in the first round of voting, with the same candidates receiving 29.66 percent, 24.59 percent and 21.24 percent in final rounds. Rounding out the four and five spots were Biden and Klobuchar with 12.37 percent and 11 percent. If these numbers hold, neither Klobuchar or Biden will receive delegates from Iowa.

Written by Jaylen Conwell
Edited by Kimberley Spinney

Sources:

The Intercept: SANDERS CAMPAIGN’S INTERNAL CAUCUS NUMBERS SHOW THEM LEADING IOWA, WITH BIDEN A DISTANT FOURTH
The New York Times: A Systemwide Disaster’: How the Iowa Caucuses Melted Down
CNN: Pete Buttigieg claimed victory in Iowa before any results were reported

Featured and Top Image Courtesy of Gage Skidmore’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons license

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