2020 race moves to New Hampshire as Iowa keeps counting

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Pete Buttigieg (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Pete Buttigieg (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

The Democratic presidential race has shifted to New Hampshire, with the full field of 2020 contenders blanketing the state ahead of its Tuesday primary.

But in Iowa, they’re still counting, after technical issues with the app used to report results led to a complete breakdown on caucus night.

With 86% of Iowa’s precincts reporting, former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg remained the leader of the race, with 26.7% of state delegates. He’s closely trailed by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, with 24.9%.

They’re followed by Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren at 17.9%, former Vice President Joe Biden at 15.9% and Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar at 12.1%.

Even as it released results, the Iowa Democratic Party continued to have issues in reporting the data. After releasing a batch of results on Wednesday afternoon, the party tweeted, “There will be a minor correction to the last batch of results and we will be pushing an update momentarily.”

The results look likely to boost Buttigieg, who needs another strong finish in New Hampshire to have a chance at addressing his campaign’s biggest weakness: a lack of support from non-white voters, who make up a much larger share of the electorate as the race shifts to the third and fourth states, Nevada and South Carolina.

Buttigieg reflected emotionally Tuesday on his success in Iowa as the first top-tier gay candidate in a major political party.

“This validates for a kid somewhere in a community wondering if he belongs or she belongs or they belong in their own family, that if you believe in yourself and your country, there is a lot backing up the belief,” he said.

Biden, meanwhile, acknowledged Iowa hadn’t turned out the way he’d hoped, with the national front-runner tumbling to fourth place.

“We took a gut punch in Iowa,” Biden told a crowd Wednesday morning in Somersworth, New Hampshire, vowing to “fight for this nomination.”

In his first events in New Hampshire, Biden, who had previously ignored his Democratic rivals and focused on taking on President Donald Trump, has taken a much more aggressive approach toward his Democratic opponents — particularly Sanders, who he criticized Tuesday over his positions on health care and gun control. On Wednesday, he suggested Sanders would hurt down-ballot Democrats in the general election.

“Every Democrat will have to carry the label Sen. Sanders chose for himself,” Biden, calling the Vermont senator a democratic socialist.

The candidates will have national audiences on CNN on Wednesday and Thursday night, with the five front-runners from Iowa plus entrepreneur Andrew Yang, billionaire businessman Tom Steyer and former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick participating in hour-long town halls from New Hampshire.

Starting at 8 p.m. ET, Biden, Warren, Yang and Steyer are scheduled to appear Wednesday night. Then Sanders, Buttigieg, Klobuchar and Patrick are up Thursday night.

On Friday, the candidates will participate in another debate, this one hosted by WMUR, ABC News and Apple News. And Tuesday, New Hampshire votes.

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