Today, the State Central Committee approved the Iowa Democratic Party’s 2020 Iowa Delegate Selection Plan, which includes the biggest changes to the Iowa Caucus system since it was created in 1972. Iowans will now have the opportunity to participate in one of six virtual caucus sessions — giving more Iowa Democrats the opportunity to engage than ever before. The innovative changes will also streamline the realignment and recount procedures to increase transparency and make it easier for Iowans to participate in the presidential nominating process.
The plan was approved unanimously, and puts the party one step closer to making the Iowa Caucuses more open, fair, and accessible. As part of the effort to increase transparency and participation, IDP leaders have worked closely with the Democratic National Committee, the State Central Committee, and activists to make sweeping changes to the caucus process. The plan now goes to the DNC Rules and Bylaws Committee for final approval.
“The Democratic Party has always been about welcoming new people into our political discourse, and these changes will do just that,” said IDP Chairman Troy Price. “The innovative solutions we’ve proposed maintain the spirit of the Iowa Caucuses and community engagement while expanding grassroots organizing opportunities for all Iowa Democrats. These changes will catapult the process into the 21st century and not only ensure the 2020 caucuses are a success, but the Iowa Caucuses will continue to be a beacon of the presidential nominating process for many years to come.”
The 2020 Iowa Delegate Selection Plan lays out several historic changes to Iowa’s caucus process, including:
- Virtual Caucusing: Over the course of six days, registered Democrats who have signed up with the Iowa Democratic Party will be able to participate in one of six virtual caucus sessions. Virtual caucus-goers will be able to rank up to five choices for president. The results will be aggregated by congressional district, which will be given an additional allocation of 10% to virtual caucus results.
- Streamlined Realignment: Under the IDP proposal, only members of non-viable groups will be allowed to realign in their precinct caucuses. For viable preference groups, their first alignment numbers will be locked and can only increase if members of non-viable groups choose to join.
- Recount/Recanvass: Presidential campaigns will be able to ask for a recount of the caucus results either by congressional district or statewide if they can show that the result could affect the allocation of delegates to the national convention. To aid in this effort, presidential preference cards will be used to record what happens in each precinct caucus, while virtual caucus preferences will be recorded electronically and preserved.
- Caucus Night Results are Locked: The allocation of national delegates will now be determined by the results on caucus night, not as a result of the convention process.
- More Information Released: The IDP plans to release the raw totals from the first alignment, final alignment and the state delegate equivalents earned by each presidential preference group. State delegate equivalents will be used to determine the allocation of national delegates.
Additionally, the SCC set the size of the state convention at 2,317. This includes 2,107 delegates elected from the county conventions and 210 from the virtual caucus. For a full break down of convention delegates, click here.
The Delegate Selection Plans covers the rules governing the Caucuses; the IDP will continue to release information about implementing additional improvements in the coming months. Read the full Delegate Selection plan here.