By James Reinl
NEW YORK (AA) – U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders and former Indiana mayor Pete Buttigieg emerged as the winners of Iowa’s Democratic caucuses after a chaotic contest that saw the final results announced three days late.
Sanders, a leftist from Vermont who wants to overhaul the U.S. healthcare system, and Buttigieg, a centrist who served in the armed forces, were in a near tie after all the vote tallies were finally collected Thursday.
An online table showed that Buttigieg had received 26.2% of votes while Sanders received 26.1%, with both candidates getting 11 state convention delegates under the state’s complicated primary voting rules.
The tally also showed Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren in third place with 18% and former Vice President Joe Biden trailing in fourth place at 15.8% — a big upset for a candidate who had been leading the pack.
In a statement, Troy Price, chairman of the Iowa Democratic Party (IDP), apologized to candidates and voters for a chaotic process that sullied the first poll for who would challenge President Donald Trump, a Republican, in November.
“While I fully acknowledge that the reporting circumstances on Monday night were unacceptable, we owe it to the thousands of Iowa Democratic volunteers and caucusgoers to remain focused on collecting and reviewing incoming results,” said Price.
“Throughout the collection of records of results, the IDP identified inconsistencies in the data and used our redundant paper records to promptly correct those errors. This is an ongoing process in close coordination with precinct chairs.”
Democratic candidates will next compete in Tuesday's New Hampshire primary.