At least two sources told the Des Moines Register that the Democratic National Committee is poised to reject Iowa’s plan for virtual caucuses, which means the nation’s first 2020 presidential caucus could get incredibly screwed up. The decision came after a meeting of the DNC’s Rules and Bylaws Committee in California last week.
The “virtual caucus” proposal was introduced in February. It would allow registered Dems to still take part in the caucus, just over the phone. Traditionally, the Iowa caucus — the first in the nation’s long-ass presidential election — is a loud, in-person affair.
After the 2016 election, the DNC required states that use the caucus system (as opposed to a primary voting system) must have an absentee voting option, thus the “virtual caucus” was born. Now, the state party needs a new plan for these new rules and it must be presented by Sept. 13.
But it’s not only the actual caucus that will be thrown off. People are already being trained to integrate the virtual caucus into the day and campaigns.
Per the Des Moines Register:
The state party has begun offering training sessions for the campaigns and for volunteers, investing time and energy into the process. The campaigns have begun strategizing and organizing around the virtual caucuses, asking potential supporters whether they would commit to caucus in person on Feb. 3, 2020, or virtually on an earlier date.
The Iowa caucus is Feb. 3, 2020, which is very close, but feels incredibly far.