Friday, February 5, 2016

Last Call For Recounting A Story

Given Iowa's first-in-the-nation status in election years, the state's Democratic party is hustling to address any issues of impropriety in this week's caucus results, and that means recounts.

Iowa Democratic Party officials are reviewing results from the Iowa caucuses and making updates where discrepancies have been found.

Party Chairwoman Andy McGuire the day after Monday's caucuses said no review would be conducted, and that Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s narrow victory over Bernie Sanders was final.

But as errors are being discovered, the final tally is being changed, party officials confirmed to the Des Moines Register on Friday.

"Both the Sanders and Clinton campaigns have flagged a very small number of concerns for us, and we are looking at them all on a case-by-case basis," Iowa Democratic Party spokesman Sam Lau told the Register.

The latest development follows widespread questions among Iowa Democrats and national media about the accuracy of the counts reported on caucus night, which saw the second-highest number of participants and closest result in Democrats' caucus history.

The Register, too, has received numerous reports that the results announced at precincts Monday night don't match what the Iowa Democratic Party has posted on its official results website.

Just one example: Grinnell precinct No. 1.

At least three caucusgoers there (including Dan McCue and Zack Stewart) and the Grinnell College newspaper reported that Sanders won 19 county delegates and Clinton 7, but party officials said the final tally was Sanders 18 and Clinton 8.

“19-7 is right,” Pablo Silva, a Grinnell College professor who was precinct secretary, told the Register Friday. “It is complicated, but the issue comes down to a problem with the math that can be complicated in large precincts. Short version: On Monday night, the IDP felt we had not done it right, and they attempted to correct what they saw as errors. We’ve been in touch since then. They are acknowledging our results, but, as I write, will wait on the arrival of our paperwork.”

Lau confirmed those details.

I don't see this as a massive problem yet, but given how close the Iowa race was on Monday, you'd be forgiven for thinking Team Bernie would make a mountain out of a molehill here.  Yes, there are always going to be a few discrepancies in any election, and that's why official results are always finalized after a few days or weeks at any level.

So far, this is well short of any grand conspiracy level stuff, as everyone involved is cooperating and clearly all parties here benefit from doing so in an open and transparent manner.

Will things change enough to affect the final tally of delegates?  Of course not.

We'll see where the final numbers end up, however.

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