KEY POINTS

  • The Iowa Democratic Party is in the hunt for a new chairman following the resignation of Troy Price
  • Price's resignation was the price he had to pay for the chaos that marred the Iowa caucus
  • Price defended his staff from withering criticisms of their performance during the caucus

A shambles as ugly as the Iowa Democratic caucus demands someone own-up to the chaos now being weaponized by president Donald Trump against Democrats. Iowa Democratic Party (IDP) chairman Troy Price did just that Wednesday by resigning his position, accepting ultimate responsibility but claiming it wasn't his entire fault.

The fiasco led some Democrats to call for doing away with caucuses altogether in the next election cycle to prevent another embarrassing episode many Democrats blamed squarely on Price. Price admitted his mistakes in his resignation letter.

"The fact is that Democrats deserved better than what happened on caucus night. As chair of this party, I am deeply sorry for what happened and bear the responsibility for any failures on behalf of the Iowa Democratic Party," wrote Price in his resignation letter to the State Central Committee.

"While it is my desire to stay in this role and see this process through to completion, I do believe it is time for the Iowa Democratic Party to begin looking forward, and my presence in my current role makes that more difficult."

The chaos was the product of many factors, he said. For one, reporting totals were released by the IDP in fits and spurts in the days after the caucus. He said results were also delayed by “coding issues” with a smartphone app used to help tabulate results in the caucus for the first time. Price also said caucus results were also packed with potential errors and inconsistencies that might affect the outcome of the contest.

He does, however, contend the IDP isn't wholly to blame for the disorder and disarray on February 3. The IDP's partners, the vendors it relied on and even the Democratic National Congress (DNC) all must take a share of the blame.

"While this process is just beginning, know that the IDP is not the only party to blame for what happened last week," according to Price. "We worked collaboratively with our partners, our vendors, and the DNC in this process, and I am confident the review will be able to determine exactly what went wrong, what went right, and how we can avoid this from ever happening again."

Price forcefully defended his harassed and much-maligned staff from the criticism they continue to receive. He said these volunteers "worked under immense pressure" and endured "threats to personal safety, taunts, and anger from people around the globe."

"These are people who are working hard towards our common goal of electing Democrats in November, and I deeply regret that these dedicated employees of our party had to endure such abuse," he wrote.

The lack of immediate results after the February 3 caucus led both Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-VT, and former mayor Pete Buttigieg to claim victory. The confusion, which wasn't cleared up until last Thursday, resulted in delegates not being awarded until Friday. Buttigieg was awarded 14 delegates and Sanders 12. By this measure, it was Buttigieg that won Iowa.

On Wednesday, IDP told the campaigns of Sanders and Buttigieg it had agreed to begin a partial recanvass both campaigns asked for earlier this week. It earlier announced Buttigieg maintaining a 0.1% lead over Sanders in the state delegate count.

The IDP will begin the partial recanvassing process on Sunday and is expect to run for two days.

Results of the US Democratic Party caucus in Iowa, with 100% of precincts reporting. Results of the US Democratic Party caucus in Iowa, with 100% of precincts reporting. Photo: AFP / Gal ROMA