Media dragged their feet in acknowledging Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's victory in the Iowa caucus, calling the race "still too close to call" and smearing Clinton as a liar, despite the fact that the Iowa Democratic Party's caucus results show Clinton has an insurmountable lead over Bernie Sanders.
Iowa Democratic Party Releases Delegate Count Showing Clinton Victory
Even With Outstanding Delegates, Clinton Has Insurmountable Lead Over Sanders In Iowa Democratic Caucus. NPR reported February 2 that "Hillary Clinton won the Iowa Democratic caucuses, according to the Iowa Democratic Party." NPR explained that based on the results of Monday's caucuses, Clinton received 699.57 state delegate equivalents, while Sanders received 695.49, and noted that there are not enough outstanding state delegate equivalents "for Sanders to make up the difference":
Hillary Clinton won the Iowa Democratic caucuses, according to the Iowa Democratic Party. Based on the results of Monday's caucuses, the IDP says Clinton received 699.57 state delegate equivalents, to Sanders 695.49.
Iowa Democratic Primary Winner Determined By Delegate Count. According to the Iowa Democratic Party rules, "the winner of the caucuses will be the candidate who accrues the most state delegate equivalents" (emphasis original):
At the end of the night, who is determined as the "Winner" of the Iowa Caucuses?
On caucus night, Iowans in each precinct elect delegates to their county conventions, but the winner of the caucuses will be the candidate who accrues the most state delegate equivalents. State delegate equivalents are calculated using a ratio of state to county convention delegates. In other words, the ratio determines how many delegates the candidate would receive for the state convention based on the number of county convention delegates a candidate receives. [Iowa Democratic Party, 2/1/16]
Hours After Iowa Democratic Party Released Results, Media Refuse To Acknowledge Clinton's Victory
New York Times: Clinton Braces For "Another Loss" In New Hampshire After Iowa. New York Times' Amy Chozick wrote on February 2 that the Clinton campaign is "brac[ing] themselves for another loss" in New Hampshire following the Iowa results, after writing that "the outcome in Iowa [was] effectively a tie." (The article was later updated, replacing "another loss" with "another battle.") Though the article did note that "The Iowa Democratic Party declared early Tuesday morning that Mrs. Clinton had won," Chozick also wrote that "The Associated Press had not called the race yet." From the original text of the Times article:
The outcome in Iowa -- effectively a tie with a far left senator from a small New England state -- dealt a jolting psychological blow to the Clinton campaign, leaving volunteers, donors and aides confused throughout the night, and then crestfallen. They had hoped that the former secretary of state would garner a decisive victory here and put to rest any doubts about her strength as a candidate.
Instead, they now head to New Hampshire, where Mr. Sanders is heavily favored in the polls, and brace themselves for another loss before they reach more hospitable states like Nevada and South Carolina.
The Iowa Democratic Party declared early Tuesday morning that Mrs. Clinton had won, but The Associated Press had not called the race yet. [New York Times, 2/2/16]
MSNBC's Joe Scarborough: Clinton Declaring Victory "Feed[s] Into The Already Existing Perception That She's Disingenuous." Co-host Joe Scarborough claimed on the February 2 edition of Morning Joe that Clinton declaring victory "feed[s] into the already existing perception that she's disingenuous." He further added that Clinton was "lying and pretending" when her campaign claimed victory:
JOE SCARBOROUGH (CO-HOST): Chuck Todd, really quickly before we go, and tell me whether I'm nitpicking or not, I may be, but it seems to me if you're Hillary Clinton and you have trouble with people trusting you, trusting your honesty, trusting your integrity, if you go out and declare something that you and Brian Williams and everybody else on TV is saying is nonsense, and then you go out on the stage and you pretend that you have won and you hug everybody and you go, thank you, oh, boy, that was close while the political gun is pointed like right at the middle of your campaign, doesn't that feed into the already existing perception that she's disingenuous, at best?
CHUCK TODD: Well, it was just -- that's what made the decision to declare before the networks did so risky because had she done it and let's say the count -- and it still is possible, we don't know if they are double-checking the work --
SCARBOROUGH: Even among people that saw her last night going, wait a second, she hasn't won yet, why are they lying and pretending that they know something that none of us know? [MSNBC, Morning Joe, 2/2/16]
Fox's Steve Doocy: Iowa Democratic Caucus Is "Still Too Close To Call." On the February 2 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, co-host Steve Doocy refused to acknowledge that the race had been called, saying that it was "still too close to call," despite noting that Clinton "barely [beat] Bernie Sanders":
STEVE DOOCY (CO-HOST): She finished at 49.9 percent right now, barely beating Bernie Sanders at 49.5 percent. Still too close to call. [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 2/2/16]
CNN's Brianna Keilar: Though There Is "No Way Sanders Can Overcome" Clinton's Lead, The "Race Is Too Close To Call." On the February 2 edition of CNN's New Day, senior political correspondent Brianna Keilar claimed that, although "there is no way Sanders can overcome" Clinton's lead, "this race is too close to call":
BRIANNA KEILAR: The Clinton campaign pretty eager to say they've had a turnaround from her devastating loss here eight years ago. This is what they're saying -- this is from her Iowa State Director Matt Paul -- he says, "Hillary Clinton has won the Iowa caucus. After thorough reporting and analysis of results, there is no uncertainty and secretary Clinton has clearly won the most national and state delegates. Statistically, there is no outstanding information that could change the results and no way that Senator Sanders can overcome Secretary Clinton's advantage." Still, of course, this race is too close to call. But that, statistically, there is no way Sanders can overcome what Clinton has done here. [CNN, New Day, 2/2/16]