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Lessons Learned From The Iowa Caucuses, And Danger Signs Ahead

the Iowa Democratic Party
the University of Iowa
the Democratic Party Chair
State Paul Pate
Department of Homeland Security

Carl Voss
Nati Harnik
Douglas Jones
Elesha Gayman
Rick Hasen
Kayleigh McEnany
Donald Trump Jr.
Christopher Krebs


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Des Moines
Scott County

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The New York Times
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A backup hotline system also failed, leaving party officials scrambling on Tuesday to answer questions and produce results, as candidates and the public tried to figure out what was going on.Some election watchers were not surprised.Douglas Jones, a computer scientist at the University of Iowa, was one of many who have warned for weeks that maybe it wasn't such a good idea to introduce a new technology at such a critical time — with the eyes of the nation on the first presidential voting of 2020."Caucus chairs in many cases apparently were attempting to download and install the app on their phones on caucus night. Out of frustration, they resorted to calling a backup hotline, which was quickly overwhelmed with calls.There were other worrisome things that occurred Monday night, which election experts see as warning signs of the kinds of problems that can emerge in the months ahead:Iowa Democratic Party officials were secretive about the details of the new smartphone app and whether it had been tested in advance for possible flaws.When things began to go awry, the party was vague for hours about what was causing the delay, leaving the public and campaigns confused, frustrated and even suspicious.

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