After the Iowa caucus disaster, Democrats with any connection to Shadow, the contractor that produced the failed app, were quick to distance themselves from the fallout. Even ACRONYM, the umbrella company that launched Shadow removed information about the company from its website. And yesterday, Iowa’s Democratic Party Chair resigned saying he was “deeply sorry” for what happened. But it turns out the Democratic National Committee was also heavily involved in the creation of the failed app, though you wouldn’t know it listening to chair Tom Perez:
The contract demonstrated that the DNC should have had the opportunity to forsee some of the problems. One provision in the contract says Shadow would provide “monthly. written updates to the DNC regarding the Software status and timeline for implementation.” It also required Shadow to work with outside consultants and cybersecurity specialists, which the DNC could “choose in its sole discretion.”…
In an interview with the New York Times on Feb. 9, Perez explicitly blamed the Iowa Democratic Party for the mess and noted the state organization had ultimate responsibility for administering the caucus.
“Troy Price was doing his best, but it wasn’t enough,” Perez said.
The source who worked on the caucus said they found Perez’s comments “extremely frustrating” because he did not disclose the DNC’s extensive role in the app.
“They were intimately involved in this process,” the source said of the DNC, noting the committee’s deputy CTO, Atwater, was on multiple conference calls during the app’s development.
Another time Perez refused to mention the DNC’s role in the app was during an interview last week with Jake Tapper. “How much responsibility do you take for what happened?” Tapper asked.
“The Iowa Democratic Party runs the actual election. Our partnership with our state parties—anytime something goes wrong, whether it’s something that’s run by the state party or not, we’re all in this together,” Perez said.
“The DNC approved the plan,” Tapper said. Perez then suggested that the DNC prevented the Iowa Democratic Party from running a phone voting system because of concerns over security. And speaking of the “now infamous app” Perez said, “they did their own RFP to select a vendor and the question we asked was ‘have you pressure tested it?'” Perez added that “they gave us assurances that it was going to work.”
In the context of the clip (see below) it sounds like the “they” he is referring to is the state party. What Perez did not say is that, per the contract, the DNC was getting written updates on progress. But when asked if he’d considered resigning over the disaster Perez said, “Absolutely not.” Now that this story is out showing the DNC was more closely involved in this process than Perez has admitted, perhaps he’ll reconsider.
Here’s the Tapper interview cued up to the question about who takes responsibility for the failure: