The Debacle in Iowa

This was supposed to be an analysis of the results of the Iowa Caucus, which officially kicks off the Democratic presidential primary race, but it’s getting very late and no results are yet available. The Iowa Democratic Party blames the delay on “quality checks” to clear up “inconsistencies.”
Which is pretty damned embarrassing for the Iowa Democratic Party, which be able to pull off its quadrennial big event by now. Given the political paranoia of the moment, on the other hand, we can understand why the the party would rather slow and safe than hasty and perhaps sorry. Four years former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton beat Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders by a razor thin margin in the caucus, close enough to leave some Sanders supporters convinced the vote had been rigged.
Sanders’ supporters were right that the state national party establishments preferred Clinton, and they were right that game was rigged with “super delegates” who earned a vote at the convention with their party credentials. Clinton wound up winning a slight majority of the votes cast in the primaries and caucuses, but Sanders’ famously ardent admirers are still seething. As the Republican nominee President Donald Trump fanned the flames of their resentment reduce Democratic turnout for Clinton, which arguably worked to some extent in the states where Trump won his electoral majority by thin margins, and this time around his campaign manager and his son were suggesting that the Democratic bigwigs are once again out to get Sanders.
According to the polls Sanders was the heavy favorite in the race, but the Des Moines Registers usually final poll wasn’t published after someone noticed South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s name was left of the list of candidates some poll respondents wee asked about, and there seemed to be a lot of volatility in the standings the late stages of the race, so we can’t blame the Democrats for being even overly cautious.
Still, it’s pretty damned embarrassing for the Democratic Party.

— Bud Norman

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