sunny.png
Friday September 18th, 2020 12:10PM

Dems lay a big caucus egg: No results from Iowa election

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Democratic party officials in Iowa worked furiously Tuesday to deliver the delayed results of their first-in-the-nation caucus, as frustrated presidential candidates claimed momentum and plowed ahead in their quest for the White House.

Technology problems and reporting “inconsistencies” kept Iowa Democratic Party officials from releasing results from Monday's caucus, the much-hyped kickoff to the 2020 primary. It was an embarrassing twist after months of promoting the contest as a chance for Democrats to find some clarity in a jumbled field with no clear front-runner.

Instead, caucus day ended with no winner, no official results and many fresh questions about whether Iowa can retain its coveted “first” status.

State party officials said final results would be released later Tuesday and offered assurances that the problem was not a result of a “hack or an intrusion." Officials were conducting quality checks and verifying results, prioritizing the integrity of the results, the party said in a statement.

The statement came after tens of thousands of voters spent hours Monday night sorting through a field of nearly a dozen candidates who had spent much of the previous year fighting to win the opening contest of the 2020 campaign and, ultimately, the opportunity to take on President Donald Trump this fall.

The candidates didn't wait for the party to resolve its issues before claiming, if not victory, progress and moving on to next-up New Hampshire.

“It looks like it’s going to be a long night, but we’re feeling good," former Vice President Joe Biden said, suggesting the final results would “be close.”

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders said he had “a good feeling we're going to be doing very, very well here in Iowa” once results were posted. “Today marks the beginning of the end for Donald Trump," he predicted.

"Listen, it’s too close to call," Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren said. "The road won’t be easy. But we are built for the long haul."

And Pete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, was most certain.

“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,” he said. "By all indications, we are going on to New Hampshire victorious.”

Democrats faced the possibility that whatever numbers they ultimately released would be questioned. And beyond 2020, critics began wondering aloud whether the Iowa caucuses, a complicated set of political meetings staged in a state that is whiter and older than the Democratic Party, are a tradition whose time had past.

The party has tried to accommodate critics, this year by promising to report three different data points about voters' preferences, presumably improving transparency. But the new system created new headaches.

State party spokeswoman Mandy McClure said it had “found inconsistencies in the reporting of three sets of results," forcing officials to try to verify results with “underlying data” and the paper trail.

Some of the trouble stemmed from issues with a new mobile app developed to report results to the party. Caucus organizers reported problems downloading the app and other glitches.

Des Moines County Democratic Chair Tom Courtney said the new app created “a mess.” As a result, Courtney said precinct leaders were phoning in results to the state party headquarters, which was too busy to answer their calls in some cases.

Organizers were still looking for missing results several hours after voting concluded.

Shortly before 2 a.m., the state party was making plans to dispatch people to the homes of precinct captains who hadn't reported their numbers. That's according to a state party official in the room who was not authorized to share internal discussions publicly.

Earlier in the night, Iowa Democrats across the state cast their votes, balancing a strong preference for fundamental change with an overwhelming desire to defeat Trump. At least four high-profile candidates vied for the lead in a contest that offered the opening test of who and what the party stands for in the turbulent age of Trump.

It's just the first in a primary season that will span all 50 states and several U.S. territories, ending at the party’s national convention in mid-July.

For Democrats, the moment was thick with promise for a party that has seized major gains in states since Trump won the White House in 2016. But instead of clear optimism, a growing cloud of uncertainty and intraparty resentment hung over the election as the prospect of an unclear result raised fears of a long and divisive primary fight in the months ahead.

One unsurprising development: Trump won the Republican caucus, a largely symbolic victory given that he faced no significant opposition.

The president's campaign eagerly seized on the Democrats' problems.

“Democrats are stewing in a caucus mess of their own creation with the sloppiest train wreck in history," Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale said. “It would be natural for people to doubt the fairness of the process. And these are the people who want to run our entire health care system?”

Pre-caucus polls suggested Sanders entered the night with a narrow lead, but any of the top four candidates — Sanders, Biden, Warren and Buttigieg — was positioned to score a victory. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, who represents neighboring Minnesota, was also claiming momentum, while outsider candidates including entrepreneur Andrew Yang, billionaire activist Tom Steyer and Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard could be factors.

"We know one thing: We are punching above our weight,” Klobuchar said late Monday, promising to keep fighting in New Hampshire.

New voters played a significant role in shaping Iowa's election.

About one-quarter of all voters reported that they were caucusing for the first time, according to AP VoteCast, a survey of voters who said they planned to take part in Monday’s Democratic caucuses. The first-timers were slightly more likely to support Sanders, Warren or Buttigieg, compared with other candidates.

At the same time, VoteCast found that roughly two-thirds of caucusgoers said supporting a candidate who would fundamentally change how the system in Washington works was important to their vote. That compared to about a third of caucusgoers who said it was more important to support a candidate who would restore the political system to how it was before Trump’s election in 2016.

Not surprisingly, nearly every Iowa Democrat said the ability to beat Trump was an important quality for a presidential nominee. VoteCast found that measure outranked others as the most important quality for a nominee.

The 2020 fight has already played out over myriad distractions, particularly congressional Democrats' push to impeach Trump, which has often overshadowed the primary and effectively pinned several leading candidates to Washington at the pinnacle of the early campaign season.

Meanwhile, ultrabillionaire Mike Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York City, is running a parallel campaign that ignored Iowa as he prepares to pounce on any perceived weaknesses in the field come March.

The amalgam of oddities was building toward what could be a murky Iowa finale before the race pivoted quickly to New Hampshire, which votes next Tuesday.

For the first time, the Iowa Democratic Party planned to report three sets of results: a tally of caucus-goers’ initial candidate preference; vote totals from the “final alignment” after supporters of lower-ranking candidates were able to make a second choice; and the total number of State Delegate Equivalents each candidate receives.

There is no guarantee that all three will show the same winner when they're ultimately released.

The Associated Press will declare a winner based on the number of state delegates each candidate wins, which has been the traditional standard.

___

Catch up on the 2020 election campaign with AP experts on our weekly politics podcast, “Ground Game.”

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Elections, General Election News, General Presidential Election News, AP Elections - Political Conventions, AP Elections - Campaigns
© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Dems lay a big caucus egg: No results from Iowa election
It's the crucial leadoff election with no results
12:54AM ( 5 minutes ago )
Iowa a carnival of democracy for media — until it went sour
For Americans following along on cable TV, Monday's Iowa caucuses were a bewildering carnival of democracy _ until it all went sour
12:49AM ( 11 minutes ago )
Iowa a carnival of democracy for media _ until it went sour
For Americans following along on cable TV, Monday's Iowa caucuses were a bewildering carnival of democracy _ until it all went sour
12:42AM ( 17 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
AP VoteCast: Iowa Democratic voters seek fundamental change
The first voters to make their choice in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination are desperate for fundamental change to the political system
12:10AM ( 49 minutes ago )
The Latest: Expert: New technology 'risky' close to election
An elections expert says deploying new technology so close to an election is “always a risky proposition” amid a delay in results from Iowa's first-in-the-nation caucuses
12:09AM ( 50 minutes ago )
Bad start for Democrats: Big delay for leadoff Iowa results
The Iowa Democratic Party says results from the state’s first-in-the-nation caucus have been delayed due to “quality checks” and new reporting rules
12:08AM ( 52 minutes ago )
AP National News
The Latest: Klobuchar appears on stage amid Iowa vote delays
Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar is the first Democratic presidential candidate to address the delayed Iowa caucus results, saying, “We know one thing: we are punching above our weight
11:43PM ( 1 hour ago )
Kenyan president says ex-president Daniel arap Moi has died
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta announced on the state broadcaster on Tuesday that former president Daniel arap Moi has died
11:37PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP VoteCast: Iowa Dems split on best challenger for Trump
Iowa Democrats are fiercely united by the goal of unseating President Donald Trump, but they were sharply divided at the state's caucuses Monday over which candidate was best equipped to do so
11:35PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Online National News
For media, Iowa is a confusing carnival of democracy
For Americans following along on cable TV, Monday's Iowa caucuses were a bewildering carnival of democracy
11:57PM ( 1 hour ago )
Dems off to poor start: Leadoff Iowa caucus results delayed
The Iowa Democratic Party says results from the state’s first-in-the-nation caucus have been delayed due to “quality checks” and new reporting rules
11:33PM ( 1 hour ago )
The Latest: Dems blame 'quality checks' on late Iowa results
The Iowa Democratic Party says it is experiencing a delay in reporting results from the first-in-the nation caucuses because of unspecified “quality checks
10:52PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Elections
Iowan voters converge on Paris, and make electoral history
This was a caucus like Iowans had never seen before
6:55PM ( 6 hours ago )
Iowans head to caucuses, may clarify Democratic field
A Democratic presidential campaign that has cost more than $1 billion, and narrowed but not yet clarified the field of Trump challengers has arrived at its first big decision day in the Iowa caucuses
6:51PM ( 6 hours ago )
Snubbing Iowa, Bloomberg charts his own path in 2020 contest
With Democratic presidential candidates in Iowa for its kickoff caucuses, Michael Bloomberg is going his own way
5:56PM ( 7 hours ago )
General Election News
Dems kick off Iowa caucuses amid worry over beating Trump
More than two years have passed since the first presidential announcement, nearly $1 billion has been spent and numerous candidates have already come and gone
12:07PM ( 12 hours ago )
The Latest: Buttigieg reacts to Trump campaign Super Bowl ad
Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg is reacting to a Trump campaign Super Bowl ad about criminal justice reform as the Iowa caucuses are set to kick off
11:55AM ( 13 hours ago )
Michigan governor to take national stage to rebut Trump
Democrats are putting Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on the national stage Tuesday to rebut President Donald Trump's State of the Union message
11:07AM ( 13 hours ago )
General Presidential Election News
AP Explains: New rules could muddle results of Iowa caucuses
For the first time, the Iowa Democratic Party will report three sets of results from its presidential caucuses
12:24AM ( 1 day ago )
In Iowa, anxiety and unpredictability cloud caucus finish
The voting in the Iowa caucuses is finally starting
12:22AM ( 1 day ago )
Trump bashes Bloomberg; Dem's campaign calls Trump a `liar'
Much of the political world is focusing on Iowa and its caucuses Monday that kick off the election season
11:49PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Elections - Political Conventions
Republicans lead fundraising in Georgia's dual Senate races
Campaign finance reports show that Georgia’s incumbent Republican U.S. senators have built a healthy fundraising advantage over their rivals in the state’s dual Senate races
3:58PM ( 9 hours ago )
Super Bowl Ads: We're trapped in a Pringles commercial!
This year’s Super Bowl won't be a politics-free zone, as both President Donald Trump and presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg will air campaign ads during the game
8:38PM ( 1 day ago )
Italian-American emerges as new star of Italy's left-wing
An Italian-American citizen who cut her political organizing teeth on two Barack Obama campaigns is taking Italy's political world by storm
8:23AM ( 1 day ago )
AP Elections - Campaigns
Iowa a carnival of democracy for media — until it went sour
For Americans following along on cable TV, Monday's Iowa caucuses were a bewildering carnival of democracy _ until it all went sour
12:49AM ( 11 minutes ago )
Iowa a carnival of democracy for media _ until it went sour
For Americans following along on cable TV, Monday's Iowa caucuses were a bewildering carnival of democracy _ until it all went sour
12:42AM ( 17 minutes ago )
1 dead, 5 wounded in shooting on Greyhound bus in California
The California Highway Patrol says a gunman opened fire aboard a packed Greyhound bus, killing one passenger and wounding five others before the driver pulled over onto the shoulder
12:29AM ( 30 minutes ago )
Pompeo message in Europe, Central Asia trip: Beware of China
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited on a wide variety of nations in his recent tour of of Europe and Central Asia, but his message stayed the same: Beware of China
12:29AM ( 31 minutes ago )
Trump faces accusers: What to watch during his big speech
President Donald Trump will be facing his accusers Tuesday night during his State of the Union speech
12:26AM ( 33 minutes ago )