IOWA CITY, IOWA (WKBN) – It was standing room only on Monday in Iowa City Precinct 23.
Due to the large crowds, the Democratic caucus didn’t start until 7:50 p.m., local time.
WKBN First News Anchor Erika Thomas’s parents live in Iowa City, Iowa, and Thomas called her mother to discuss the process.
Edie Pierce-Thomas said 675 people filled the room of a local church on Monday. People had to be in line by 7 p.m., she said.
Pierce-Thomas said the Iowa Caucus gives people the opportunity to share why they support a particular candidate, and they have the opportunity to share the platform’s ideas.
“It’s part of the grassroots process that you feel like you’re really part of the process, rather than just anonymously casting your vote, and then that’s it, you’re done in five minutes,” she said.
The Democrats have 44 delegates at stake and the Republicans have 30 — a small sliver of what it will take to win each party’s nomination.
For Democrats, it will take 2,382 delegates to win the nomination. For Republicans, it will take 1,237.
Hillary Clinton started off with a big lead because of endorsements by Democratic superdelegates. They’re the party leaders who can support the candidate of their choice.
Republicans don’t have nearly as many superdelegates.
Pierce-Thomas said the goal is to convince people to support your candidate.
The precinct chose five delegates for Hillary Clinton and six for Bernie Sanders. The whole process took about an hour once the doors closed.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.