Indian Americans disappointed with Iowa Democratic Caucus chaos

 

Community had registered in record numbers for the first major contest of presidential primary season.

All eyes were on Iowa Monday night, the Midwestern state known for its rolling plains and cornfields as also its biennial caucuses that officially kick off the first major contest of the US presidential primary season.

Unlike primary elections in other US states, Iowans gathered at over 1600 local caucus meetings across the state to discuss and register their preference for the 2020 Democratic presidential candidate.

With the growing Asian interest in American politics, Indian Americans were not only more involved in the Feb 3 Iowa Democratic caucuses, but according to local Indian American policy and civil groups there was also an increased participation.

However, as technical glitches continued to derail results, there is a sense of disappointment in the community.

The Iowa Democratic Party failed to announce any results till late Tuesday morning due to inconsistencies in reporting the results.

As confusion spread, there was a sense of disappointment across the country. Anushka Shah, a 28-year-old, marketing professional from Washington said, “I woke up, early in the morning to catch up on Iowa caucus.

“It has been our tradition as we know the caucus sends important clues on what to expect this year in the presidential run, but news of glitches and inconsistencies hardly sound like the logical thing you would want to hear right from where the action was. We really were rooting for Bernie (Sanders), so still keeping our hopes alive.”

Washington DC based human rights lawyer, Arjun Sethi tweeted: “The Democratic Party owe the people of the United States (and the world) an apology. They had four years to get this right. Trump has waged war on so many communities here and abroad, we feel the impact everyday & they can’t even administer a ballot.”

Nisha Saran, a homemaker from New Jersey shared in a phone call with the American Bazaar, “We have been hearing that Bernie Sanders may have won big time. He even released some internal numbers. We are a family divided over Biden and Bernie, so whoever works for us but yes, this confusion is actually uncalled for.”

Many Indian Americans who admittedly tuned in for the first time to the caucus say that they were disappointed. Sanjay S from Des Moines said, “We have not taken active participation in local politics and we wanted to change it so we along with our grown-up kids were looking ahead to the results.”

“But the whole coin toss thing left our family in splits. I wish there was a better way,” he said referring to the coin toss at a caucus to decide the winner when Pete Buttigieg and Elizabeth Warren were tied.

For many Indians the Iowa Caucuses were much awaited as the community had participated in never before numbers and the diversity at the caucuses ranged from many people of color volunteering to even mosques serving as precincts.

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