It just continues to get worse and worse for the Iowa Democratic Party — and, by extension, for both the Democratic National Committee and grassroots Democrats across the country alike. The already-infamous app crashing that has resulted in politicos still not knowing the full and final results of Monday night’s first-in-the-nation caucuses was compounded by the fact, as The Daily Wire noted, that the Iowa Democratic Party turned down express overtures from the Department of Homeland Security to help with vetting the technology.
As of Thursday morning, The New York Times’ “live” caucus results tabulator showed former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg with a remarkably narrow lead over Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT). Buttigieg currently leads Sanders 26.2% to 26.1% in the total statewide popular vote, and by 550 to 547 in terms of state delegate equivalents. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) is in third place, with 18.2% and 381 state delegate equivalents, whereas bumbling former Vice President Joe Biden is in fourth place with 15.8% and 331 state delegate equivalents. Overall, then, with 97% of Iowa precincts reporting, Buttigieg leads in 59 of Iowa’s 99 counties, Sanders leads in 19, and politicos everywhere eagerly anticipate the results of the final 28. Despite his minuscule deficit in statewide popular vote and state delegate equivalents, however, the Times’ current “live estimate” of who will ultimately prevail shows Sanders as a narrow favorite over Buttigieg.
In short, this is total chaos and a dumpster fire of catastrophic proportions.
But now, the Times is separately reporting that the results finally reported by the Iowa Democratic Party on Wednesday are “riddled with errors and inconsistencies.”
“The results released by the Iowa Democratic Party on Wednesday were riddled with inconsistencies and other flaws,” the Gray Lady wrote. “According to a New York Times analysis, more than 100 precincts reported results that were internally inconsistent, that were missing data or that were not possible under the complex rules of the Iowa caucuses.”
“In some cases, vote tallies do not add up,” the Times continued. “In others, precincts are shown allotting the wrong number of delegates to certain candidates. And in at least a few cases, the Iowa Democratic Party’s reported results do not match those reported by the precincts.”
“Some of these inconsistencies may prove to be innocuous, and the irregularities do not indicate an intentional effort to compromise or rig the result,” the newspaper reported. “But not all of the errors are minor, and they raise questions about whether the public will ever get a completely precise account of the Iowa results. With Mr. Sanders closing to within 0.1% with 97% of 1,765 precincts reporting, the race could easily grow close enough for even the most minor errors to delay a final projection or raise doubts about a declared winner.”
This is not exactly the way a political party ostensibly preoccupied with repelling election interference and preserving the integrity of the franchise would prefer that a leading left-wing newspaper cover its first-in-the-nation caucuses.
Separately this week, guru Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight weighed in with insights on how “Iowa might have screwed up the whole nomination process.”
“To be … blunt: The Iowa Democratic Party’s colossal screw-up in reporting results will potentially have direct effects on the outcome of the nomination process,” Silver wrote. “The failure to report results will almost certainly help Biden, assuming that indications that he performed poorly in Iowa are correct, as they won’t get nearly as much media coverage. And they’ll hurt whichever candidate wins the state — most likely Sanders or Buttigieg.”
“It’s not a good situation for the Democratic Party,” he concluded. “And it’s already too late for the damage to be entirely undone, even if Iowa eventually gets its act together.”