Pete Buttigieg does well in Iowa Caucus despite disruption
Former South Bend, Indiana mayor, Democratic Party candidate, and possibly America’s first openly gay presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg took the early lead in the 2020 Iowa Caucus.
The results were announced by the Iowa Democratic Party (IDP) Chair Troy Price with their release of 62 percent of the precinct results after unprecedented delays.
Pete Buttigieg at the Iowa Caucus
Buttigieg’s closest rival was Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, who came in second to Buttigieg with the state delegate equivalents (SDE) but was first in the popular vote.
Buttigieg had 363 SDES while Sanders 338 SDEs. However, Sanders had 27,088 in first preference votes to Buttigueg’s 23,666. Sanders also led in final preference votes with 28,220 versus Buttigieg’s 27,030.
As a result, Buttigieg told Des Moines supporters: “We know by the time it’s all said and done, Iowa, you have shocked the nation, because by all indications, we are going on to New Hampshire victorious.”
Later on, he told media that his declaration was based on his campaign’s “internal numbers” as no official results had yet been released.
Meanwhile, Sanders expressed cautious optimism, saying that “when those results are announced, I have a good feeling we’re going to be doing very, very well here in Iowa.”
Elizabeth Warren trailed Buttigieg and Sanders in the two rounds of preference votes and in SDEs. Joe Biden was in fourth place while Amy Klobuchar was in fifth place.
Delay in reporting at the Iowa Caucus
The issue surrounding the release of the Iowa Caucus results were due to a “quality control” issue.
A phone app that caucus officials were supposed to download to report the data to the state party office reportedly failed.
Moreover, a backup plan wherein officials could phone in results left the count in limbo.
The state party said in a statement that with the “inconsistencies” in the reported results, the data would not be released publicly until it was confident of the results.
LGBTQ groups supporting Pete Buttigieg
LGBTQ groups lauded Buttigieg as the election process heats up.
“Pete has shattered expectations for his candidacy throughout the campaign, and he will continue to do so in the primary states ahead,” said Annise Parker, president of the LGBTQ Victory Fund, which endorsed Buttigieg last July.
Parked added: “Tonight’s strong showing provides the publicity and momentum he needs to head into New Hampshire.”
Equality California, the largest statewide LGBTQ political organization, said they aren’t endorsing Buttigieg “simply because he’s gay.”
Rather, they said, his candidacy “has already had a transformational impact on the LGBTQ community.”