DNC Chair calls for Iowa recanvass...

DNC Chairman Tom Perez's announcement came shortly before Bernie Sanders claimed victory Thursday in a race that officially remains too close to call. m

"In light of the problems that have emerged in the implementation of the delegate selection plan and in order to assure public confidence in the results, I am calling on the Iowa Democratic Party to immediately begin a recanvass."

The parallel developments underscored the chaos that has gripped the party in the aftermath of Iowa's caucus debacle.

Incomplete state party results show Pete Buttigieg with a slight lead in the state delegate equivalent count, but Sanders argued that he has a significant advantage in the popular vote and accused the media of putting too much stock in standard delegate equivalents

the results that the party and most media organizations are using to crown the winner.

"Even though the vote tabulations have been extremely slow, we are now at a point with some 97 percent of the precincts reporting where our campaign is winning the popular initial vote by some 6,000 votes," Sanders told reporters at his New Hampshire headquarters. "And when 6,000 more people come out for you in an election than your nearest opponent, we here in northern New England call that a victory."

In the latest results released by the Iowa Democratic Party, Sanders and Buttigieg are neck and neck, with the Vermont senator trailing by just one-tenth of a percentage point in state delegate equivalents with 97 percent of precincts reporting. Sanders, however, was leading in the popular vote count by more than 2,500 votes.

Buttigieg, for his part, already declared victory earlier this week, drawing the ire of rival campaigns.

Though Perez later clarified that the state party will continue reporting results, his call for a recanvass comes after the public release of the results has been delayed for days, with reports of errors and inconsistencies in the results.

"While I fully acknowledge that the reporting circumstances on Monday night were unacceptable, we owe it to the thousands of Iowa Democratic volunteers and caucus goers to remain focused on collecting and reviewing incoming results," said Troy Price, the state party chairman.

"Should any presidential campaign in compliance with the Iowa Delegate Selection Plan request a recanvass, the IDP is prepared," he noted. "In such a circumstance, the IDP will audit the paper records of report, as provided by the precinct chairs and signed by representatives of presidential campaigns."

Once results started trickling in, reports of other inconsistencies arose. An analysis from The New York Times on Thursday, published after about 97 percent of precincts' results have been reported, found that "more than 100 precincts reported results that were internally inconsistent, that were missing data or that were not possible under the complex rules of the Iowa caucuses."