Iowa caucuses 2024: Live updates and results

The Iowa Democratic Party office in Des Moines, Feb. 4, 2020. (Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images)The Iowa Democratic Party office in Des Moines, Feb. 4, 2020. (Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images)

The Iowa Democratic Party office in Des Moines, Feb. 4, 2020. (Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images)

The short answer: Not much.

Since 1972, Iowa Democrats — like their Republican counterparts — have held a privileged position in choosing their party’s nominee. In fact, it had a better record of picking nominees than the GOP’s caucuses: Hillary Clinton (in 2016), Barack Obama (in 2008), John Kerry (in 2004) and Al Gore (in 2000) all won Iowa before capturing their party’s nod later in the year.

But Iowa, which is about 83% white, is significantly less diverse than the Democratic electorate nationally and the country as a whole. It’s also a lot more conservative and Republican than it used to be, making it an awkward choice for the first Democratic presidential contest.

Finally, the last Democratic Iowa caucuses, in 2020, were a disaster. The party was unable to figure out the winner for more than a week, causing confusion among voters and anger among national party officials. This all led to Iowa being demoted on the primary calendar last February.

So Iowa Democrats will caucus on Monday night, but they will not be weighing in on who the nominee will be.

President Biden steps off of Air Force One amid snow flurries at Andrews Air Force Base on Monday. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP)President Biden steps off of Air Force One amid snow flurries at Andrews Air Force Base on Monday. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP)

President Biden steps off of Air Force One amid snow flurries at Andrews Air Force Base on Monday. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP)

“During a Friday news conference, Iowa Democratic Party Chair Rita Hart said she hopes Monday will be a catalyst for enthusiasm,” the Des Moines Register reports. “The party will still host caucuses around the state that night. Democrats will elect delegates and central committee members. They also will choose a party platform.”

Despite the bitter cold, Hart said she hoped and expected the party faithful to turn out.

So while Iowa Democrats will be getting together tonight and deciding some matters, they’ll be voting by mail this year and their selection won’t be announced until March 5 — otherwise known as Super Tuesday, the busiest day of the primary calendar, when 15 states hold nominating contests.

Iowa Democrats have until Feb. 19 to request a “presidential preference card” and vote for their nominee by mail. The candidates on the Democratic ballot are President Joe Biden, author Marianne Williamson and Minnesota Rep. Dean Phillips.


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