Democratic presidential candidate former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg speaks at a Get out the Caucus rally at Faiss Middle School February 21, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Nevada holds its presidential caucus tomorrow.
Pete Buttigieg’s presidential campaign has asked the Nevada State Democratic Party to hold off on releasing final tallies from Saturday’s caucuses, alleging a slew of errors in the process of reporting the results.
In a letter sent to Nevada Democratic Party Chairman William McCurdy II, the campaign requested the party release early vote and in-person vote totals by precinct, correct early vote and second alignment errors, and explain “anomalies” in the data.
Nevada State Democratic Party spokeswoman Molly Forgey said Sunday morning that the party is continuing to verify and report results, and would not change the reporting process.
“We never indicated we would release a separate breakdown of early vote and in-person attendees by precinct and will not change our reporting process now,” she said. “As laid out in our recount guidance, there is a formal method for requesting a challenge of results.”
Buttigieg is in third place in Nevada after about 60% of precincts had reported as of Sunday morning. He is hovering at the 15% threshold needed to take delegates from Nevada to the national convention.
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is the projected winner Saturday night by a large margin, effectively cementing his early front-runner status. Former Vice President Joe Biden followed up in second place.
The presidential campaigns are still waiting on data from the final day of early voting in the state. The state Democratic Party said roughly 75,000 people voted in the four-day early-voting period, which Forgey said “brought thousands of new voters into the process but also added another layer to the caucus math.”
“Given how close the race is between second and third place, we ask that you take these steps before releasing any final data,” Buttigieg’s national ballot access and delegate director Michael Gaffney wrote in the letter.
Hari Sevugan, Buttigieg’s deputy campaign manager, said the campaign’s internal numbers showed a “razor thin margin for second place in Nevada.”
“Due to irregularities and a number of unresolved questions we have raised with the Nevada Democratic Party, it’s unclear what the final results will be,” he said.
It’s unclear how quickly Nevada Democrats will be able to confirm and release the final results. Nevada has faced questions about whether it could report results accurately following the disastrous Iowa caucus earlier this month that was plagued with technological and reporting errors.
The results from the Iowa caucuses are still unresolved. Sanders left the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary roughly even with Buttigieg in the national delegate race.