Returns from the Iowa presidential caucuses were much slower than expected on Monday night as the state Democratic Party said it was working on “quality control” and a new counting system used for the first time caused delays.
“We are doing our quality control checks, making sure the numbers are accurate. People are still caucusing, we’re working to report results soon,” the party said.
For the first time, the state Democratic party will report three sets of results: “the first expression of preference” from caucusgoers for a candidate; vote totals from the “final alignment” after backers of lower-ranking contenders make their second choice; and the total number of state delegate equivalents won by candidates.
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“The integrity of the results is paramount. We have experienced a delay in the results due to quality checks and the fact that the IDP is reporting out three data sets for the first time,” communications director Mandy McClure said.
The IDP results app was not working and the backup phone line is likewise “a disaster,” a source familiar with the process said, adding that the campaign were all participating in a briefing about the situation.
“The app is the issue and the hotline is smoked,” said Joe Galasso, a volunteer in charge of new registrations for Waukee precinct 2. He had just gotten off the phone with precinct chairman Matt Chapman. They have not been able to report their results, even though they wrapped up more than an hour ago.
Shortly after 11 p.m. ET, no results had been reported — a much slower process than had been expected. At about the same time in the 2016 caucuses, roughly 90 percent of the vote had been reported.
The party said it would release information about the results as soon as it passes quality control, adding that it was taking additional steps out of an abundance of caution.
“What we know right now is that around 25 percent of precincts have reported, and early data indicates turnout is on pace for 2016,” McClure added.