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In Iowa caucus mess, Democrats fumble first election of 2020

The Democrat Party’s first big showing in the 2020 election has been an unmitigated disaster with the Iowa caucus.

On Sunday, a highly anticipated poll of likely Iowa Democratic caucus-goers was scuttled after a voter complained of polling irregularities, prompting the survey’s conductors to shelve the results out of an “abundance of caution.”

READ: Tulsi Gabbard accuses Democrat Party of corruption

On Monday, the day of caucuses, Iowa Democratic Party members held emergency meetings late into the evening over possible voting irregularities and precinct reporting errors. They announced eventually an indefinite delay to the release of the election results due to “quality checks.”

OPINION

At this rate, with this sort of disorder and chaos, President Trump is going to steamroll whomever the Democrats throw at him and his well-oiled machine this November. It is going to be like the 2016 election all over again, which is really quite appropriate considering Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign manager, Robby Mook, is reportedly tied to the electoral mess in Iowa.


It is a bit convoluted, but it goes like this: The Iowa Democratic Party tried something new this year. It tried to synchronize all election reporting with a new smartphone app, “which is downloaded on the personal cellphones of caucus managers to tabulate and report results,” the Des Moines Register reports.

Unfortunately, the app simply “does not work,” a precinct secretary told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer late Monday evening after the Iowa Democratic Party announced its plans to withhold the results.

Adding to the disarray, the precinct secretary said that he and other officials were told after the app imploded to call a special hotline. But the hotline also does not seem to work, the precinct secretary said, adding in a live interview that he had been on hold for more than an hour (his call was answered live on-air during his interview with Blitzer, but the operator hung up on the precinct secretary before he could respond, leaving him with no choice but to dial in again and get back in line at the end of the queue).

Other election officials have been instructed to take photos of the results and text them to the appropriate party authorities. Also, it is worth noting here that NPR reported back on Jan. 14 that the app had major security concerns, warnings that appear to have gone unheeded.

In other words, the Iowa Democratic caucuses has been a complete and total mess.

This is where Mook supposedly comes into play, according to the Des Moines Register:

[Iowa’s Republican and Democratic Parties] and their app and web development vendors partnered last fall with Harvard’s Defending Digital Democracy Project to develop strategies and systems to protect results and deal with any misinformation that’s reported on caucus night.

They worked with campaign experts Robby Mook and Matt Rhodes — as well as experts in cybersecurity, national security, technology and election administration — and simulated the different ways that things could go wrong on caucus night.

Mook, 2016 campaign manager for Hillary Clinton, and Rhodes, Mitt Romney’s 2012 campaign manager, helped develop a public-service video to alert campaigns to the warning signs of hacking and misinformation.

Oh, come on.

Two failed campaign managers were consulted on how to improve the security and reliability of the Iowa caucuses? It is as if party leaders were begging for things to go wrong. Maybe Rhodes, sure.

But Mook? This is the same person who dismissed Bill Clinton in 2016 after the former president raised concerns about Hillary Clinton’s weak showing with white and middle-class primary voters. Mook sidelined Bill Clinton as a tired has-been, insisting instead that Mook’s own electoral model showed that young, Latino, and black voters were the key to winning 2016. That sure went well for Mook and his candidate.

For what it is worth, the failed campaign manager disputes the Des Moines Register’s reporting.

“Sorry, folks. I did NOT have anythjng to do with building the Iowa caucus app,” Mook tweeted Monday. “I dont know anything about it, had no role in it, and dont own a company that makes mobile appa. Please contact @iowademocrats with questions about it.”

Seems like someone is lying. Either the Des Moines Register’s reporting on the app is fundamentally flawed, or Mook is not telling the truth about his involvement in the app’s development. Forgive me if I am inclined to believe the newspaper over the former Clinton aide. The Clinton brand is not exactly known for its honesty.

–BecketAdams | Washington Examiner

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