It reached the timelines and Twitter feeds of many voters Sunday that the Nevada State Democratic Party hired a former Pete Buttigieg campaign staffer as its new Voter Protection Director.
Less than two weeks out from the Nevada Caucus and less than a week after the disastrous Iowa Caucus, it was revealed that Emily Goldman, identified as a former staffer of the Pete Buttigieg campaign in multiple screenshots of her social media profiles, had been hired by the state party.
After Iowa and the incredibly tight race there between Senator Bernie Sanders and the South Bend Mayor where Buttigieg has been tentatively announced as the victor though Sanders won the popular vote, much of the attention has turned to New Hampshire, the nation’s first primary, and especially Nevada, the second caucus leading to the Democratic nomination.
Among concerns about a disaster like the one in Iowa, some Nevadans are now worried about this recent hire and what it means for impartiality in the voting results.
Many Twitter users, mostly clear supporters of Sanders, expressed their disapproval of the state party’s choice, saying that it is a clear conflict of interest.
Yet, in a statement to News 3, the state party said, “We have many former campaign staffers and volunteers working to protect the integrity of this caucus, including people from Harris, Sanders and Warren’s campaign—it is not unusual or uncommon for this to happen.”
Back on Twitter, Sanders’ campaign manager Faiz Shakir said, “We’ve spoken with the Nevada party, which has assured us that this individual does not have decision-making authority over the caucus count. [Please] know we are working hard with the party to get every assurance that mistakes of Iowa are not repeated.”
According to the state party’s website, the Voter Protection roles involve data analysis and volunteer engagement as well as voter education.
The state party says that no one person can affect the results of the caucus, adding, “Everyone working at NV Dems now has the same job: executing the most transparent, accessible and expansive caucus in the country.”
On Thursday, the Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez called for a recanvass of Iowa following the delays in the caucus.
NV Dems says that it will not be using an app like the one that caused the Iowa debacle for the Nevada caucus, but no other details have been released despite reports that volunteers are being trained on some sort of software downloaded on iPads.
In response to News 3’s questions about what’s being described as a caucus “tool,” NV Dems released this statement:
NV Dems will execute a successful caucus on February 22. We continue to work around the clock to evaluate and test a process that will support our nearly 3,000 trained volunteers. As we had always planned, we will have a paper backup and redundancies in place for our process. Our caucus will be secure, simple and efficient.