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Iowa Democrats Insist 2020 Caucuses Will Be Accessible

troy price
Clay Masters/IPR file
Iowa Public Radio
Iowa Democratic Party Chairman Troy Price addresses members of the press in Des Moines on 8/30/2019

The Democratic National Committee is recommending that Iowa scrap its plans for telephone-based virtual caucuses next year, citing security concerns. The DNC had asked the state party to make Iowa’s first-in-the-nation caucuses more accessible following the 2016 election. 

The caucuses are regularly criticized for not being inclusive. The Iowa Democratic Party came up with a plan in February to give participants the opportunity to make decisions via phone.

“The DNC got to a point where they felt, given where things are and given the threat landscape that exists, that virtual caucus technology in this cycle should not be used,” said Iowa Democratic Party Chair Troy Price.

“But at the end of the day I don’t believe that we should be developing a system that would put us in a position to have anyone who used that system to vote put into jeopardy,” Price added at a press conference at IDP headquarters in Des Moines.

The DNC says unless compliance can be met through other means, Iowa should consider a waiver to return to only in-person caucuses for 2020.

Price insists Iowa will remain a caucus state and will continue to be first-in-the-nation in the presidential nominating process.

Clay Masters is Iowa Public Radio’s Morning Edition host and lead political reporter.