(Red Oak) -- Officials with Montgomery County's Democratic Party were among those experiencing issues with reporting results from Monday's Iowa Presidential Caucuses.
Joey Norris, chair of the county's Democratic Party, announced his county's delegate count on KMA's "Morning Line" program Tuesday morning. Two-hundred-56 attendees participated in the caucuses. In the end, Pete Buttigieg garnered the most delegates with 18, followed by Bernie Sanders with 11. Joe Biden had 9, Amy Klobuchar, 6, Elizabeth Warren, 5 and Tom Steyer, 1. Norris says his precinct captains were in charge of reporting results to the Iowa Democratic Party. But, it wasn't easy.
"I did hear of some fairly long call waiting times," said Norris. "The folks that use the mobile app, it was a breeze. The folks that got done early, then called it, it was a breeze. The folks that were a little later--9-ish, 9:30, 10 o'clock-ish--those people that waited to call in then, there were some fairly long wait times of about a half hour to 45 minutes."
In his opinion, Norris says the Democratic Party relied too much on the app for reporting results, and weren't prepared for the onslaught of phone calls.
"We probably relied a lot on the app," he said. "When it didn't work for some reason, folks went to the phones, because that's what people have done historically. You know, every year, they usually call them in, and so, I think they didn't have enough staff to man the phones when that was the backup. The default setting for most folks was to call. So, they didn't have enough phones answering the phones. But, there's nearly 1,700 precincts. We probably had hundreds of thousands of folks participating in this. A little delay is probably expected."
This year's Democratic caucuses also operated under a new format, in which candidates receiving less than 15% support in the first alignment were deemed not viable. Supporters with the viable candidates then wooed those from the eliminated ones to their group for the second alignment. Delegates to county conventions were then awarded based on results of the second round. Norris believes the new process worked well.
"Once the first alignment was done, and folks went into the second alignment, there was some discussion, some people making their cases," said Norris. "People got aligned, the math worked out, and they were done. I think the longest precincts for that section only took about 45 minutes."
While political pundits are questioning the Iowa Caucuses future as a result of Monday night's reporting issues, Norris hopes the state's first-in-the nation status in determining presidential candidate strength will endure.
"I chose to stay in Iowa because I love this process," he said. "Our first in the nation status is a unique thing. That being said, most of this is being a little sensationalized we are really good at this in Iowa. We had a little bit of a hiccup this year. I think as long as we're fairly accurate on who the winner is, and that it lines up pretty well with whoever wins the Democratic nomination later this year, I think we're going to keep the first-in-the-nation status."
Norris, by the way, will have a stake in the June 2nd. Iowa Primary, as he is running for the Democratic nomination in Iowa's 12th State Senate seat currently held by Republican Mark Costello. You can hear the full interview with Joey Norris on our "Morning Line" page at kmaland.com.