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DNC Chair Tom Perez Calls for Recanvass in Iowa Caucus

Iowa's DNC still doesn't have final results from Monday's caucus.
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Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez called for a recanvass in Iowa nearly three full days after technical issues and delays during the state's Democratic caucuses failed to name a clear winner.

“Enough is enough. In light of the problems that have emerged in the implementation of the delegate selection plan and to assure public confidence in the results, I am calling on the Iowa Democratic Party to immediately begin a recanvass,” Perez tweeted Thursday.

But what frustrated observers and Iowa Democrats want to know is: What exactly is a recanvass?

A recanvass is a review of the vote totals of each county in a specific jurisdiction, Iowa in this case, to make sure those vote totals are correct. It differs from a recount in that individual votes aren't recounted, just the totals for whole jurisdictions.

In Iowa, “parties to any contested election shall have the right, in open session of the court or tribunal trying the contest and in the presence of the officer having them in custody, to have the ballots opened, and all errors of the precinct election officials in counting or refusing to count ballots corrected by such court or tribunal,” said the Iowa state code.

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Based on that reading, it is unclear whether Perez has the authority to call for a recanvass as he is not a party “to any contested election.” 

The DNC has been receiving flack from Bernie Sanders supporters, some of whom have alleged a conspiracy to derail the momentum of his campaign ahead of the New Hampshire primaries on Feb. 11.

In 2016, Sanders campaign requested a state-run recanvass of the Kentucky results when he faced Hillary Clinton in the Democratic presidential primaries. 

Efforts to reach the Sanders campaign Thursday for comment weren't immediately successful.

The Iowa caucus took place on Monday across 1,678 precincts with most results expected to be counted by 11 p.m. ET that night. However, the Iowa DNC said that an app run by a company called Shadow Inc. had failed and that there would be a delay in counting the votes.