The 2020 presidential election officially begins tonight at 8 p.m. ET across the state of Iowa.
Iowans care more about health care by a long shot over other issues.
41% Health care
21% Climate change
17% Income inequality
14% Foreign policy
Pictures From Iowa
The @JoeBiden campaign has opened the doors and people have begun trickling in to Biden's caucus night event after participating in their own caucuses. Oh, and the media is here too. #iacaucus pic.twitter.com/HazgT3tfCc
— Stephen Gruber-Miller (@sgrubermiller) February 4, 2020
— Isaac LaRoy Hamlet (@IsaacHamlet) February 4, 2020
— Andrew Batt (@AndBatt) February 4, 2020
A festive atmosphere at the YMCA in South Des Moines — one of the first sites in Iowa tonight to serve caucus-goers who only speak Spanish. And yes, they’re playing all the hits.
— Jazmine Ulloa (@jazmineulloa) February 4, 2020
— Vanessa Miller (@VanessaMiller12) February 4, 2020
— Julie Fleming (@jaflemingf) February 4, 2020
Over the last few weeks we have been talking to students across the state about our vision for #FreeCollegeForAll and why they should #CaucusForBernie because he shares our vision for a radical higher education system that works for everyone! #IACaucus pic.twitter.com/NDSe6kifQq
— Iowa Student Action (@IAStudentAction) February 4, 2020
— Maria Langholz (@MariaLangholz) February 4, 2020
At our precinct in Des Moines, due to immigrant turnout, chairs ran out for Bernie. Biden, 2nd, wasn’t viable. He needed 15 votes and had max 10. Bernie had 138 in round 1. #IowaCaucuses #IowaCaucus #Iowa #Bernie2020 pic.twitter.com/2RU98Erkzi
— S.V. Bhatia (@SVBhatia) February 4, 2020
Why you will hear realignment:
First comes the aptly named first round.
That’s when caucus participants break into their presidential candidate preference groups, moving to one part of the room to indicate support for a certain candidate.
After that happens, each group is counted. A candidate typically needs 15% of the vote to be viable (aka make it to the next round).
If a candidate doesn’t meet the 15% threshold, those participants can then realign (get it?) to support another candidate. The Iowa Democratic party’s new rules now say only participants with non-viable candidates can realign.
That realignment process happens until the final round, when all candidate groups meet 15%. Then, the caucus precinct chair determines how many county delegates are assigned to each candidate group.
The winner of the Iowa caucuses is based off the delegate allocation, rather than popular vote (similar to the electoral college).
Problems With a Caucus-Counting Mobile App
A source told CNN that the Democratic Party has encountered problems with an app that should “transmit vote totals from precincts to state headquarters.” More:
Iowa Democratic Party Communications Director Mandy McClure tells CNN that, from the beginning, party officials have been prepared to deal with issues of human error and poor cell service as they arise. The app is not the only option to forward precinct vote totals.
“The IDP is working with any precinct chairs who want to use the optional tabulation application to make sure they are comfortable with it,” McClure said. “We’ve always been aware that many precinct chairs prefer to call in results via a secure hotline, and have systems in place so they can do so.”
Linda Nelson, a chairperson for the Pottawattamie County’s Democratic party, posted a call for help on Facebook:
“I still cannot get my caucus app to work. I get to the point of adding my precinct PIN from the math worksheet, I continue to get the error message. What am I doing wrong?”
While precinct totals may be transmitted with the mobile app, the party is using presidential preference cards for each voter to create a paper backup system for tonight’s caucuses.
The state Democratic party organization oversees tonight’s contest.
I still don’t fully understand caucuses:
Delegates are awarded based on those who reach a certain threshold of support by the end of the night.
For the Democratic caucuses, voters will split up into different sections of the room dedicated to their presidential candidate of choice. Typically, a candidate needs 15% of the vote to remain viable, as determined by the amount of people participating in the precinct location. Smaller locations may have different viability thresholds.
If a candidate is not viable, their voters can realign to another viable candidate or join together to create a group in support of another candidate that meets the threshold.
Iowa Republican caucusgoers will vote by secret ballot, not by standing up in different groups like Iowa Democratic caucusgoers.
It takes place in 1,678 caucus locations along with 87 satellite locations. They even have one in Tbilisi, Georgia!
The Democrats have a chance of getting 41 delegates.
WAJ UPDATES — CHAOS! AND THEY WANT TO RUN THE COUNTRY?
Des Moines Precinct 80:
Bernie’s group had 101 people
Pete’s group had 66 people
Bernie & Pete end up tied at 4 delegates following a coin toss.
— Polk County Sheriff Jaylen Cavil (@jaylencavil) February 4, 2020
Wow — another twist. Sanders won this precinct by 20 points but now 5 candidates will get 1 delegate each — Biden team amassed extra delegates, and then siphoned them to Klo & Warren. Bernie supporters are pissed “This is a joke.. waste of time.” Stormed out.
— Philip Klein (@philipaklein) February 4, 2020
Apparently they learned from the Master:
Bernie won and the party is currently wiping all the servers with a cloth https://t.co/NAzNplGIOr
— Brent Scher (@BrentScher) February 4, 2020
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