Who Won Iowa? Sanders’ Unofficial Caucus Numbers Show Him in the Lead


The Iowa caucus was Monday night and it marked the first big election in the Democratic primary campaign. Unfortunately, issues with the app and other sources caused the Iowa Democratic Party to delay their results much later than anticipated, until sometime on Tuesday. Bernie Sanders‘ campaign ended up releasing unofficial numbers that they had before IDP. These aren’t the official results, but they show Sanders’ campaign with a strong lead

Bernie Sanders’ Campaign Released Its Results, Which Show Sanders in the Lead

With 41 delegates at stake, Iowa certainly couldn’t guarantee the nomination, but it can help create momentum that will carry campaigns through the coming months. Bernie Sanders’ campaign has released their internal caucus numbers, since Iowa’s official numbers are delayed.

These numbers represent 40% of the Iowa precincts and not the full data. It shows Sanders with 29.66%, Elizabeth Warren with 21.24%, and Pete Buttigieg with 24.59%. Next is Joe Biden with 12.37% and Amy Klobuchar with 11%.

According to reports on social media, Sanders’ precinct captains were collecting data through their own app, which might help pinpoint any irregularities once the official results are released.

Meanwhile, Elizabeth Warren’s campaign manager said that the Iowa caucus results were a “mess” and every second that passes “undermines the process a little bit,” KIII TV reported. Roger Lau said the campaign hadn’t seen much data, but internal figures showed a three-way tie with Warren, Sanders, and Buttigieg. Biden was reportedly a “distant fourth.”

A summary that just shows 1.93% of the precincts from AP as of the time of publication also gives Sanders the lead with 25.41% to Warren’s 21.97% and Buttigieg’s 18.65%. This was last updated at 11:48 p.m. Eastern on Monday.

Daniel Clark, a precinct captain for Sanders in Iowa who is also a county delegate for Iowa, told Heavy: “Even in small conservative rural Iowa, we are feeling the Bern! I was proud to caucus with the most diverse group of people at my caucus and we stand in solidarity with Bernie Sanders. As a delegate, I hope to go to the DNC again, to make Bernie our 46th President. We started the momentum, now onto New Hampshire!”

As for the official results, those likely won’t be released until sometime on Tuesday.

Results: Democratic 1st Round

Once the official results are released, Decision Desk will populate them in the forms below. For now, those results are blank and likely won’t be filled in until sometime on Tuesday.

Results: Democratic 2nd Round

Results: Democratic Delegate Equivalents

The Frontrunners

Recent Iowa polls have given some strong frontrunners for today’s caucuses, according to 538. A Monmouth University poll for January 23-27 gave first place to Joe Biden at 29%, followed by Bernie Sanders at 25%, Pete Buttigieg at 20%, and Elizabeth Warren at 19%. Meanwhile, another Monmouth University poll handed a first place tie to Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders at 22%.

A Civiqs poll for January 23-27 in Iowa gave Sanders the win at 24%, followed by Warren at 19%, Buttigieg at 17%, and Biden at 15%. Amy Klobuchar hit the double digits here at 11%, followed by Andrew Yang at 5%. A Morningside poll for January 17-23 put Biden in first at 19%, followed by Buttigieg at 18%, Sanders at 15%, Warren at 15%, and Klobuchar at 12%. Tom Steyer came next with 6%.

A Change Research poll for Iowa January 22-26 placed Sanders in first at 30%, followed by Buttigieg at 23%, Biden at 22%, and Warren at 20%. Judging by how differently all these polls fall, today’s caucus is anyone’s to win. The strongest frontrunners have consistently been Biden, Sanders, Warren, and Buttigieg.

But in a Florida satellite caucus for Iowa just before the precincts opened, Klobuchar came in with a strong lead too. So it was always possible for someone to have a surprise win.

What Was at Stake

The Democratic National Convention will take place July 13-16. According to Ballotpedia, there will be 4,750 delegates total, including 3,979 pledged and 771 automatic (more commonly known as superdelegates.) In order to not have a contested convention, a candidate needs 1,991 pledged delegates on the first ballot. (Superdelegates aren’t allowed to vote on the first ballot.) If no candidate gets this majority of pledged delegates, then a second ballot (or more) will take place and both pledged and automatic delegates can vote this time. From then on, a candidate needs the majority of all delegates to win, which is more than 2,375 votes.

So out of the 1,991 pledged delegates needed to win the first ballot at the DNC, today’s caucus had 41 at stake who would be divided among the viable candidates who get 15 percent or more of the votes. So it doesn’t guarantee a win, but it can certainly help with momentum.

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