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The Failed Iowa Caucuses and the Future of Politics in the US

To say the Iowa caucuses of 2020 was a mess would be an understatement.

Though the media and the political world has moved on to New Hampshire and beyond, the fact remains that Iowa was a total and unequivocal . From performing “quality control” to ensure accuracy of the results, the Democratic party could not have botched Iowa any worse.

As the first true contest of the year that allows the Democratic National Committee and the rest of the American public to gain a scope of what the Democratic nominee picture will look like, the Iowa caucuses instead brought nothing but incompetence and confusion. It resulted in Pete Buttigieg claiming victory in what some might consider to be an illegitimate contest.

Such incompetence led to shifting blame on a shady app used to tally voting results ironically named Shadow Inc., to determining delegate numbers by coin toss, resulted in a candidate declaring victory in a contest in which results had not yet been announced. Furthermore, there were errors being found in one hundred precincts with the DNC ultimately taking matters into their own hands to sort the debacle out,

The initial thought that comes to mind after hearing all of this chaos is that the DNC is trying to cheat Bernie again.

After all, the party that demonstrated its lousy, laughable ability of running a series of smooth caucuses in the state of Iowa was the same party that cheated Bernie Sanders out of the democratic nomination in 2016, after leaked emails from the DNC showed a particular disdain for Sanders, in contrast to a rather favorable view of Hillary Clinton.

Now  that the DNC took the reins to “ensure accuracy” of the results in Iowa — where Buttigieg narrowly defeated Sanders by a 0.1% margin — it is fair for one to conclude that the DNC could be up to more tomfoolery to ultimately cheat Sanders out of the nomination once again in 2020.

Additionally, a few questions one might have as a result of this tumultuous outing: “How do they regroup so this doesn’t happen again?” Or rather “How do we know for certain this won’t happen again?”

Aside from questions or takeaways specifically pertaining to Iowa on a micro level, a bigger takeaway from this entire fiasco has to be the waning trust or confidence in our political systems as a whole. I don’t know about you, but it’s events like these that make me take the democratic process and the parties involved much less seriously.

How can one grant legitimacy to an electoral event that decides tied contests by a coin toss? How can one trust the “new” results of these caucuses, much less the party itself that is tasked with running a clean, competent election?

Political catastrophes such as these give creeping doubt a chance to manifest in voters’ heads. Doubt that fair elections are being run, doubt that their vote actually matters, doubt that the game of politics is as advertised and not rigged.

More importantly, an even bigger takeaway is questioning the leadership of the Democrat Party and expressing concern for the future of the country. Is this the best system being offered to the people of the United States? How can we trust the Democrats to run the country efficiently if we can’t even trust them to run state caucuses competently?

In fact, we’ll find out what national Democrat leadership looks like sooner rather than later.  Demographic shifts in the American populous are giving Democrats more electoral power every year.

“Demographics are a freight train carrying them into the future … The future belongs to Democrats if they work hard and focus on 2020,” Joe Scarborough of MSNBC recently said.

Additionally, George Skelton of the Los Angeles Times said in November  2019 that “The GOP’s core constituency is white people, and they’re a declining slice of the California population pie.”

The same is also true for the rest of the U.S. As politics is at the forefront of media during every election year, events such as this year’s Iowa caucuses and cultural shifts as mentioned previously are important things to consider.

One thing is for certain is that interesting times lie ahead.

Written by Grant Palmer, Staff Writer. 

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