Buttigieg holds narrow lead as majority of Iowa precincts report initial caucus results
SOUTH BEND, Ind.-- Former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg continues to hold a narrow lead over Senator Bernie Sanders in the Iowa caucuses. More results were released Wednesday afternoon representing 75% of the precincts.
As of Wednesday afternoon, 75% of Iowa precincts reported results. Buttigieg remains in the lead with 26.9% of state delegate equivalents, followed closely by Sanders at 25.2%, then Senator Elizabeth Warren at 18.2%, Biden at 15.6%, Senator Amy Klobuchar at 12.5% and businessman Andrew Yang at 1.1%.
Buttigieg shared an emotional moment with supporters in New Hampshire on Tuesday after initial results were read aloud.
“It validates the idea that we can expand a coalition that can stand unified not only on who it is we’re against, but who it is that we’re for. It validates for a kid somewhere in a community wondering where he, she or they belong,” Buttigieg said.
Campaign officials said that moments after initial results were results, the Pete For America website saw over two times their record traffic.
Voters in Iowa shared their own thoughts on Buttigieg’s traction following his performance in Iowa.
“I see a lot of myself in him. I’m a veteran, I’m from the Midwest and we’re about the same age. He’s a lot better spoken than I am but he’s my guy,” said Jason Benell, a voter in Iowa.
“Pete’s the smartest guy in town by a long shot. Pete’s got heart. Pete gets us about belonging and Pete can bring people together,” said Cindy Roser, another voter in Iowa.
Local political expert Jack Colwell on Wednesday said Buttigieg was “robbed” of a lot of potential and favorable publicity on Monday night due to the delay in results.
“It’s a real debacle. It’s amazing they couldn’t get the results in earlier,” Colwell said.
On Monday night, an issue with a new app used by the Iowa Democratic Party to count votes failed. The group cited inconsistencies with the reporting data as the issue, but reassured the country that the results would be verified manually.
“The integrity of our process and the results have and always will be our top priority. At this point, the IDP is manually verifying all precinct results. We want to emphasize that this is a recording, not a hack or intrusion. And it's exactly why we have a paper trail and systems in place to uphold the integrity of our process,” said Iowa Democratic Party Chair Troy Price in a statement.
Colwell said he thought Buttigieg would do well but overall, he’s surprised the former mayor did as well as he did.
“I didn’t expect it. We still don’t know if he really won but it sure looks like he’s in first place or nearly tied for it,” Colwell said.
Former Vice President Joe Biden had a disappointing performance in Iowa, Colwell said. Early results show Biden finishing in fourth place in Iowa.
“Biden ought to thank the people who came up with that app. If those totals had been broadcast to the nation that night, the story would have been Biden finishing in fourth place,” Colwell said.
As for the upcoming New Hampshire primary, Colwell hopes we know who actually won on election night.
“Bernie Sanders is a favorite to win there. He’s always done well there,” Colwell said.
As of Wednesday afternoon, 75% of Iowa precincts had reported initial results. Buttigieg remains in the lead with 26.9% of state delegate equivalents, followed closely by Sanders at 25.2%, then Senator Elizabeth Warren at 18.2%, Biden at 15.6%, Senator Amy Klobuchar at 12.5% and businessman Andrew Yang at 1.1%.