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'Mad as hell': DNC chairman pushes for an end to caucuses after Democratic Party flubs in Iowa
Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images

'Mad as hell': DNC chairman pushes for an end to caucuses after Democratic Party flubs in Iowa

Iowa may lose its first-in-the-nation status, too

In response to the debacle in Iowa last week, Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez is calling for an end to caucuses and threatening to strip Iowa of its first-in-the-nation status.

"I do think it needs to be state election officials running elections," Perez told CNN's Jake Tapper during an interview Sunday.

"It's undeniably unacceptable. I'm frustrated, I'm mad as hell — everybody is," he added with regard to the party's flubbed handling of the Iowa caucus after a coding issue disrupted the app designed to collect voting data.

Results were not ready to be released the night of the caucus, leading to widespread speculation and distrust. Days after the fiasco, when the majority of results had finally been tallied and made public, the Associated Press declined to project a winner due to errors and irregularities reported by several campaigns.

During the interview, Perez signaled that a shake-up in the order in which states vote is also on the docket following this year's election cycle.

"Is Iowa about to lose their first-in-the-nation caucus status?" CNN anchor Jake Tapper asked. To which Perez responded, "Well, that's the conversation that will absolutely happen after this election cycle."


Perez, though not directly involved in the debacle since it is state party officials — not the national party — who run the Iowa caucus, has nonetheless been pressured to resign.

When Tapper asked if he was considering stepping down, Perez responded, "Absolutely not."

"We are really good at building parties, building organizing, building the best voter file, winning elections ... that's our sweet spot as a party," Perez said.

"But not running elections themselves," Tapper jumped in to suggest.

"Right," Perez affirmed.

During the interview, Tapper pressed Perez to outright demand that changes be made, but Perez was careful to note that the DNC does not have unilateral power to simply end caucuses. Rather, individual state legislatures would have to vote to move from a caucus to a state-run primary system.

One state that does hold a state-run primary is New Hampshire, which is set to hold its primary Tuesday. Democrats will be hoping for a clean result.

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