Hillary Clinton’s former campaign manager Robby Mook denied involvement in the Iowa Democrat Party’s caucus disaster, after an app that was meant to make it easier to report results apparently failed.
“Sorry, folks. I did NOT have anythjng to do with building the Iowa caucus app. I dont know anything about it, had no role in it, and dont own a company that makes mobile appa. Please contact @iowademocrats with questions about it,” Mook said in a typo-laden tweet.
Sorry, folks. I did NOT have anythjng to do with building the Iowa caucus app. I dont know anything about it, had no role in it, and dont own a company that makes mobile appa. Please contact @iowademocrats with questions about it.
— Robby Mook (@RobbyMook) February 4, 2020
However, his denial contradicted reports he and Matt Rhoades, Mitt Romney’s 2012 campaign manager, worked together on a project aimed at protecting voting from cyberattack, Defending Digital Democracy (DDD), that tested the app.
The New York Times reported January 31:
In November, Iowa’s Democratic and Republican Parties teamed up with the Defending Digital Democracy Project at Harvard to run a drill of worst-case scenarios. The event, led by Robby Mook, the campaign manager for Hillary Clinton in 2016, and Eric Rosenbach, a former chief of staff at the Pentagon, featured a fire drill of sorts, designed by future Defense Department officers.
‘We ran them through the ringer and pushed them really hard,’ Mr. Mook said. ‘Some were much better at managing technical issues, and some were better managing information operations and disinformation, misinformation and communicating with the public. So I think they really learned from each other, and they created some best practices for each other.’
According to reports Monday night, the app failed not due to hacking, but confusion over how to log into it.
Earlier in the day, several Democratic precinct chairs complained they were unable to log into the new phone app to report results, according to the Des Moines Register.
Bret Niles, chairman of the Linn County Democratic Party, told the paper he was aware of eight of 86 precinct officials in that county that had trouble logging into the app as of Monday afternoon.
Niles said precinct chairs had been provided a PIN to test the mobile app, which was different than a login required for Caucus Day, and that some chairs might have entered the wrong login credentials Monday, creating temporary problems.