As of the time of writing, the Iowa caucus results have not been announced. This hasn’t stopped campaigns from hyping their supporters up or bracing for bad news. Mike Bloomberg is dismissive of Iowa entirely, and Elizabeth Warren has decided that this is the official start of the primary and caucus season. Pete Buttigieg’s team stuck around to clean up, and Bernie Sanders was shouting about being attacked before the caucuses even began.
For all new readers: Welcome! I am currently on the mailing lists of 8 candidates for the Democratic Presidential Nomination! This blog breaks down recent emails with charts and excerpts. If you already know all of this, feel free to skip to the next chart!
I signed up to all mailing lists either on May 21 or the day the candidate announced, whichever was later. Using a different email address, I have donated at least $1 to all candidates who have been on a debate stage (I have given additional donations to my preferred candidates through my personal email, but the campaigns have linked the two accounts together and may ask for more as a result).
When showing breakdowns by campaigns, there will usually be 2 numbers. Emails to my non-donor account will be indicated by a darker color/top bar in horizontal bar charts. Emails to my donor account will be indicated by a lighter color/bottom bar.
Unless otherwise specified, all other charts combine the donor and non-donor numbers, as they are roughly 1-for-1, so the percentages and relative differences don’t change much. You can divide the numbers in half to get the rough estimate for what someone not signed up twice would be receiving. The rules I try to follow for the various categories are laid out in The Framework.
If you want specific data on any particular day, feel free to drop a comment!
Pete Buttigieg seems to have settled in at 7 emails a day as the new normal, much to my distress. Joe Biden sent out 5 emails, and Elizabeth Warren trailed behind with only 4. Much to my surprise, only 4 of the 11 campaigns sent more than 2 emails on the official start of the primary and caucus season.
Unsurprisingly, everyone was talking about Iowa. Even Mike Bloomberg, famously arguing that he is going to go everywhere and fight for everyone (except the first four states) sent an email about Iowa. Though, to be fair, Bloomberg’s Iowa email was more about how little Iowa mattered.
Today, all eyes are on Iowa.
However, our campaign is not there. That’s because Mike’s attention is focused on winning the Democratic Primary, which means competing for the 98% of delegates who are not in Iowa. We’re running a national campaign — because it is going to take the entire nation coming together to defeat Donald Trump.
Regardless of the outcome of tonight’s Iowa caucuses, the facts don’t change: We need a strong Democrat who can bring the party together and build the operation it will take to defeat Trump in November. Mike will get it done.
Shortcutting the primary may win him over some voters, but it really just keeps pissing me off. There’s a reason we don’t have a national primary, and it’s called Money. If we had a national primary from day one, it would immediately cut out anyone who isn’t already a national public figure or able to self-fund.
But then again, that doesn’t apply to Bloomberg. Why should he follow the rules designed to be fair to the lesser folk?
Unusually, over 50% of the emails I received on Monday were optimistic. “We’ve got this, we can do this!” were common themes. Michael Bennet was cheering that he made it to the starting line. Pete Buttigieg talked about how the future was going to be defined not by exclusion, but by belonging. Elizabeth Warren was excited about the official start to the primary and caucus season…
In just a few hours, Iowa will hold its caucuses for the 2020 election, kicking off the Democratic Primary.
And in just a few hours, Iowans across the state will fight for Elizabeth and fight for big, structural change.
It’s because of supporters like you that we’ve come this far, and we’ve built a movement that has the momentum to win. But these next few hours are crucial to our success, and that’s why we need your help.Team Warren
Yeah. Yeah, remember yesterday, how I shared that email about how only the billionaires and the pundits considered Iowa the official start, and Warren was talking about how it had already started? She certainly did an about-face here to try to hype up her supporters day-of.
Pete Buttigieg sent me an email with a lot of positivity, including this message:
In just about eight hours, Iowans will head to their local caucuses. We won’t stop working until the last caucus is over and the final delegates are awarded. And if I know anything about our supporters, even then, once the caucuses are over, they will probably stay to help clean up and put the room back together. That’s the Team Pete I know.Brendan McPhillips, Iowa State Director, Pete for America
I have to say, while watching the caucuses on C-SPAN last night, people were leaving. The local caucus chair and secretary were sitting at the head table tallying counts, and a Team Pete supporter came up. “Is there anything else I can help you with?” he asked. The secretary, wearing a Pete Buttigieg Rules of the Road t-shirt, asked if he’d already cleaned up their area, and he said yes. She sent him on his way after that.
But sure enough, Team Pete had stuck around to put the room back together.
Andrew Yang invited me to send Yang personal notes of encouragement before the caucus, while Michael Bennet and Mike Bloomberg sent me ads to watch. Joe Biden asked me to make calls into Iowa for his team. He also was the only candidate to send an email as the caucuses were beginning, an email with no ask, just gratitude.
Right now, Iowans are caucusing in schools, community centers, and public places around the state. This is just the start of the nominating race — we’ve got a long way to go.
Tonight is the first big step, but one of many steps to go, of many delegates yet to still be awarded in this Democratic Primary.
Whatever happens tonight, I intend to compete every step of the way and fight for every one of your votes.
Because here’s the deal, we can’t win the battle for the soul of this nation without a diverse coalition of Americans. And together, we are building the broad, deep, diverse coalition of support that Democrats will need next November to beat Trump.
So I want to thank all the folks across Iowa who are caucusing right now — no matter who you are caucusing for. Just the act of participating in this process gets us closer to defeating Donald Trump.
And I want to thank you all for your support, throughout the country, that got us to this point. Thank you for your donations, your phone calls, your steadfast belief in this campaign when talking to your friends, families, and neighbors.
We’ve gotten this far because of you. We’ve hit every goal, risen to every challenge, and fought back every attack, thanks to you.
Thanks for being with me from the beginning. We’re just getting started.
Keep the faith,Joe Biden
As the night wore on, Pete Buttigieg, Elizabeth Warren, and Tom Steyer all sent encouraging emails as well. Buttigieg and Warren both stressed that while the results weren’t in yet, things were sounding good from their precinct captains’ reports, and Steyer was just proud to have me in his corner.
Bernie Sanders did not send any nighttime emails on Tuesday, but he did make sure I knew that he was going to win the caucuses and then be attacked from all sides so he was going to need massive amounts of money moving forward.
Everything we have worked towards is leading up to tonight. In a matter of hours, Iowans will be at their caucus locations. And a couple hours after that, we should know the winner.
Until then, there’s something we’re going to ask you to do. And that is to help us get ready for what comes next.
We fully expect to come out of Iowa with an unprecedented amount of attacks from the political establishment. They will be hoping to derail our movement. We cannot let that happen.
So while we wait for the results from Iowa, we would like to ask if you can help our campaign reach a goal of a huge number of contributions.
Please make a contribution of $2.70 to our campaign so that we can come out of Iowa ready to win New Hampshire, take on any attacks, and win this nomination so that we can defeat Donald Trump and transform our country.
We have come this far because millions of people have said that they stand with Bernie and our campaign. Thank you for being a part of it.Faiz Shakir, Campaign Manager, Bernie 2020
This email was sent at 3:37 PM EST, 4.5 hours before the caucuses even began. It’s not the first time Sanders has spread this message of “we’re about to come under fire” in the past few days.
Are you surprised that the Sanders crowd is screaming the loudest about the delayed caucus results meaning it was rigged or people cheated, despite probably coming in the top two?
Tone starts at the top. The attitude of the candidate matters.