All eyes… still on Iowa

Well it’s been more than 12 hours since we were supposed to have results from the Iowa Caucus, and it doesn’t look like we’re much closer to a resolution than we were back then.

After the New York Times reported the first 1-2% of results, everything just paused.

Reports started trickling out about caucus chairs sitting on hold with the state party for up to an hour – just trying to provide results.

Word eventually broke that the software designed to report and share the first and second alignment totals were experiencing some nonspecified issues. Users reported crashing on switching screens or going to sleep mode, and rumors surfaced that the database was down or incorrectly tallying the data.

Buttigieg and Klobuchar seized on the opportunity to declare a victory for themselves, while the Sanders campaign posted their totals for the precincts where they had captains who recorded results. Sander’s numbers showed him in first with about 28% of the delegates, and Buttigieg posted very similar data showing him with a similar 28% lead in the districts he had captains at.

Rumors have circulated about Shadow Inc, the publisher of the software that seems to be at the center of this mess. Several campaigns, including Buttigieg and Gillibrand, purchased software services from the firm, as did the Iowa and Nevada state parties. The founder of Shadow Inc also expressed personal enthusiasm for Pete, so his early declaration of victory coupled with operational breakdown and the appearance of impropriety has already turned quite a few campaigns sour.

As of noon, there is no official word from the state party on who won or when results will be available. Last night they were claiming all the data was available and merely needed to be confirmed, and today the latest report from WaPo is that staffers are being dispatched to retrieve the physical paper ballots to confirm the data.

They claim the results will be “as soon as possible” and that their goal is to publish them today, but there’s likely to be a lot of further contention about what those results say and whether or not they can be trusted.

Santorum drops out; Romney in trouble

April 10, 2012

Well, it is official:  Santorum has dropped out of the 2012 Republican primary race, and Romney stands alone as the only candidate to have won a significant number of state contests.  Although Gingrich and Paul are still technically in the race, there’s no way they can win outside of an incredibly rare and unlikely brokered convention.

However, this victory for Romney is a Pyrrhic one:  every nationwide and state-by-state poll shows Obama winning in November by a comfortable margin.  According to the state electoral tracker at Real Clear Politics, Obama already has the 271 electoral votes required to win re-election.  Even if Romney could carry every single toss up state, it wouldn’t matter in the slightest.

The big shift in this election may be looked back on as the time when the evangelical-led, socially conservative movement finally died.  Before birth control resurfaced, Romney had a slim margin among women voters.  After the ridiculous attack from the right against womens’ reproductive rights, this marginal support turned in to a 2:1 landslide in Obama’s favor.

 

Palin wants to run, ensure Obama re-election

Little could do more to ensure the re-election of President Obama than Sarah Palin taking a serious attempt at the office in 2012.  While she does have the support of a dedicated following, her appeal is too limited to offer a real chance at a national victory.  Even if she wins some large southern states, none of them really has the population to overcome the absolute losses in California, New England, and the Pacific Northwest.  Even in the South and Midwest, many moderates would be unlikely to throw their support behind this divisive character.

Frankly, a lot of us think she’s an idiot.  And that doesn’t speak well for her supporters.