The results of the Iowa caucus were a history-making tie between the two main Democratic Presidential candidates. What is being called a “virtual tie” by most, and a victory for Hillary by some, was actually determined by several coin tosses.
According to the Iowa Democratic Party Chairman Andy McGuire, “The results tonight are the closest in Iowa Democratic caucus history.”
— Annah Backstrom (@AnnahBackstrom) February 2, 2016
With 96% of the precincts reporting late last night, Hillary had less than half of one percentage point lead against Bernie Sanders. The final results came in after Clinton won six back to back coin tosses in six precincts. According to Iowa caucus rules set forth by the Iowa Democratic Party, a coin toss is allowed in the case of a tie.
— David Beard (@dabeard) February 2, 2016
— Andrew Tadlock (@andytadlock) February 2, 2016
As many news outlets have noted, winning a coin toss 6 out of 6 times is extremely rare. The odds are only 1.6 percent. If Sanders had won half of the coin tosses he would have been the official victor of the Iowa caucus.
So what does this mean for the future of Sanders’ campaign?
While many Sanders supporters showed obvious disappointment, the Sanders’ campaign didn’t hesitate to send out an uplifting message of hope late last night:
“Tonight we accomplished what the corporate media and political establishment once believed was impossible: after trailing Hillary Clinton in Iowa throughout this entire campaign, it looks as if we will leave the state with roughly the same number of delegates.
I want to be clear with you about what this really means. Tonight’s result is a victory for our political revolution. We have proved that when people come together, anything is possible.”
“When we started this campaign, almost everyone wrote us off. We were down 41 percent in the polls… and those were some of the good ones. They said our ideas were radical and that we could never compete with the big-money fundraising of Hillary Clinton and her super PACs.
Well, you showed them tonight.”
Before the Iowa caucus, and especially in the early stages of Bernie’s campaign, the presumed victory and Democratic candidate nominee was Clinton. Sanders’ victory in Iowa forces people to take him seriously and severely hurts the Clinton campaign. It shows how much he has been underestimated.
Just one week before the Iowa caucus, several news outlets and polls predicted a win for Hillary. Up until last night, political pundits claimed that Bernie Sanders only had the attention of young and unlikely voters. The results from yesterday strongly prove otherwise.
Sanders has shown that with an average campaign donation of $27 and without a super PAC, he can still give Hillary a run for her money, and maybe even win.
Next up for the candidates is the New Hampshire primary, where Sanders is polling ahead of Clinton by about 23 points.