Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang fielded questions from New Hampshire voters Wednesday during a CNN town hall ahead of the state’s primary on Tuesday. At one point, host Don Lemon pressed him about the Iowa caucuses, which had a problematic results process that was delayed for days and riddled with inconsistencies.
“I feel for the Democrats and the people of Iowa, but the fact is this was really an avoidable error that shot the party in the foot,” he said. “And it’s going to be harder to convince Americans that was can entrust massive systems with government if we can’t count votes on the same night in a way that’s clear and transparent and reliable.”
When Lemon pressed Yang about his performance in Iowa — he earned 5 percent of the vote in the first round but ultimately only obtained equivalent to 1 percent of the state delegates — the 45-year-old serial entrepreneur pointed to former President Bill Clinton’s performance in the state.
“Bill Clinton got less than 3 percent in Iowa in 1992. He went on to do great here in New Hampshire and become president for two terms. We’re hoping we can follow in his footsteps.”
Although results from 3 percent of Iowa’ precincts have yet to be released, Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg currently have 11 national delegates. However, Sanders pointed to his 6,000-person lead over the former South Bend mayor in the popular initial vote and chalked his performance up to a win, Newsweek reported.
Presidential candidate Andrew Yang calls the Iowa caucus fiasco an “avoidable error that shot the party in the foot.”
— CNN (@CNN) February 6, 2020
It appears that Yang agrees. In a post to Twitter on Thursday, the candidate said “it sure looks like” Sanders took the win in Iowa.
It sure looks like Bernie won Iowa. Excited to compete for the win in New Hampshire on Tuesday!
— Andrew Yang???? (@AndrewYang) February 6, 2020
Per The Washington Examiner, Buttigieg declared victory in Iowa before any of the official results were announced and received support from media outlets that promoted his claim. As the results were slowly released, reports of consistencies began to surface, and the Iowa Democratic Party took criticism for the lack of transparency during the handling of the rollout.
Yang is currently campaigning in New Hampshire and will appear at the Democratic presidential debate in the state on Friday, FiveThirtyEight reports. Both the debate and the primary will be important opportunities to make up for his campaign’s performance in the Iowa caucuses.
Within recent months, Yang has received a wave of celebrity endorsements, including from comedian Dave Chappelle and actor Donald Glover, whose rap persona is Childish Gambino. Notably, Chappelle has campaigned with Yang and also performed two comedy shows to raise funds for the campaign.