Iowa Democratic caucus results still delayed due to reporting ‘inconsistencies’

Lauren Grobe

The results of the Iowa caucus are still unclear after a historic delay in vote counting Tuesday night.  

The Iowa caucus is the first primary election, kicking off the election season. At the time of print, only 62% of Iowa’s counties reported results with no update as to when the rest of the results would be released, said Mandy McClure, Iowa Democratic Party communications director, in a press release.

Votes were counted on an app created by tech startup Shadow Inc., which was hired by the Iowa Democratic Party to record election results. The delay was due to inconsistencies between results reported on the app and on paper, McClure said.

Because of an error in the app’s reporting system, the app was only reporting partial data, said Troy Price, Iowa Democratic Party chair, in a statement.

“This is simply a reporting issue, “ McClure said in a statement on Twitter. “The app did not go down, and this is not a hack or an intrusion.”

Josh Blank, director of research at the Texas Politics Project, said the delay in results itself is not as significant as how the campaigns spin the results in favor of their candidate.

“The most important thing is for them to get the results right,” Blank said. “(The candidates) want to be able to use Iowa as the springboard to move on to New Hampshire and then these bigger states.”

Eligible voters had to register with a party in order to vote in the Iowa caucus. During the primary, voters had to attend the caucuses of their corresponding party. At the Democratic caucuses, voters separated into groups based on their first-choice presidential candidate.

“Any candidate who doesn’t receive (the support of) at least 15% of the caucus-goers present at the caucus, (voters) basically then get the option to support another candidate or walk away,” Blank said. 


Based on the first and final alignments, the candidates are awarded delegates who will go on to vote in the Democratic National Convention this July.

For the first time, the Iowa Democratic party released three sets of results: first alignment, voters’ first-choice candidates; final alignment, how voters changed after the unviable candidates were eliminated; and state delegate equivalents, how many delegates each candidate received, Blank said.

Blank said this was part of Iowa working to improve its caucus over time.

President Donald Trump won 97% of the Republican vote, earning 39 Iowa delegates, according to an article from the Associated Press. Trump has run largely uncontested for the Republican nomination as he is an incumbent president running for his second term.