By Robert A. Vella
Right out of the starting gate, Democrats stumbled in yesterday’s Iowa caucuses. Reporting of the votes was apparently impeded by a phone app, and officials insist the problem was not caused by a cyber-attack. The results should be announced later today. The foul-up added fuel to the fire of critics who correctly see party caucuses as inherently undemocratic and want Iowa to convert to a primary election system.
Don’t you just love commercial technology? The more complex it gets, the more unreliable it gets. Sorry young people, but the price of convenience is unavoidable and sometimes very costly.
I think Democrats should boycott tonight’s State of the Union speech by America’s preeminent crime boss – err, I mean President Trump. They won’t, of course, because the words “courage” and “Democrats” are incongruous in the same sentence.
And, speaking of “courage,” Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) gave a furious speech in the GOP’s impeachment sham trial in which she lambasted Trump, her fellow Republicans, Democrats, the mainstream media, and the polarized sentiments of the American people (see: Republican Senator Murkowski spares few in fiery impeachment speech), for putting her in the uncomfortable position of having to vote on whether to allow witness testimony and documentary evidence in the trial. Poor baby, she was forced to make a decision. Perhaps she thinks politicians should be able to earn their paychecks without doing any hard work. If it’s too hot in the kitchen, maybe she should just get out. Frankly, I am quite disgusted. Murkowski voted against witnesses and evidence in support of the GOP cover-up simply because she prioritized partisan politics over ethical principles. She enabled a thoroughly corrupt dictator who is hell-bent on obliterating the rule of law and representative democracy as established in the U.S. Constitution. Her offense cannot be forgiven. She is nothing but a spineless coward whose criticism should fall upon the most deserved… namely, herself.
First-in-the-nation Iowa was supposed to be the first indication, based on votes and not polls, of where the candidates stand in the Democratic primary horse race.
But now, after the state party found “inconsistencies” in the reporting of the results, the candidates — and the country — are still in the dark regarding how caucus-goers felt Monday night.
“While our plan is to release results as soon as possible today,” Iowa Democratic Party (IDP) Chairman Troy Price said in a statement Tuesday morning, “our ultimate goal is to ensure that the integrity and accuracy of the process continues to be upheld.”
DES MOINES — Sean Bagniewski had seen the problems coming.
It wasn’t so much that the new app that the Iowa Democratic Party had planned to use to report its caucus results didn’t work. It was that people were struggling to even log in or download it in the first place. After all, there had never been any app-specific training for this many precinct chairs.
So last Thursday Mr. Bagniewski, the chairman of the Democratic Party in Polk County, Iowa’s most populous, decided to scrap the app entirely, instructing his precinct chairs to simply call in the caucus results as they had always done.
The only problem was, when the time came during Monday’s caucuses, those precinct chairs could not connect with party leaders via phone. Mr. Bagniewski instructed his executive director to take pictures of the results with her smartphone and drive over to the Iowa Democratic Party headquarters to deliver them in person. She was turned away without explanation, he said.