Iowa Democratic Party approves recanvass requests

The recanvass is expected to begin Feb. 16, and last two days. The recanvass room will be closed to the public, but campaigns can have representatives to oversee the process.


Megan Nagorzanski

University of Iowa students form lines during the caucus at the Iowa Memorial Union on Monday February 3, 2020.

Caleb McCullough, Politics Reporter

The Iowa Democratic Party approved the full recanvass requests from the Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Mayor Pete Buttigieg campaigns, according to a press release on Wednesday. The recanvass is expected to begin Feb. 16

On Monday, the Iowa Democratic Party announced that it had received requests from the Sanders and Buttigieg campaigns to conduct a recanvass of a combined 143 precincts around Iowa.

The Buttigieg campaign requested a recanvass of 57 precincts and all in-state satellite locations, and the Sanders campaign requested a recanvass of 25 precincts and three satellite locations.

In letters addressed to the campaigns, the party said the recanvass is expected to last two days. The IDP Recanvass/Recount Committee will be transmitting information on the cost of the recount to campaigns on Friday, and they will have 24 hours to confirm their request.

“In accordance with the Delegate Selection Plan, up to two representatives from each presidential campaign will be allowed to oversee the precinct recanvass on site,” the press release said. “Per the [Delegate Selection Plan], the recanvassing room will not be open to the public or the press.”

In a recanvass, the Recanvass/Recount Committee will appoint workers to go over caucus worksheets from each recanvassed precinct and match them against the official results, correcting any inconsistencies.

As Iowa Democratic Party Chair Troy Price said in a press conference Monday, workers conducting the recanvass will not be able to change results on caucus worksheets, even if the math is wrong. A recount would need to be called for the results on the sheets to be corrected.

“For us, they are the official record of what took place in the room, and we do not believe that we should be altering what is the official record of what happened in the room,” Price said on Monday.