Republicans turned out for the Iowa caucuses in historic numbers Monday night, smashing its 2012 record by a wide margin.
By the end of Monday night, the state's Republican party had counted over 180,000 people that participated in the Iowa caucus.
The numbers blew past 2012's record, when about 121,500 people caucused.
"I'm very, very proud of my fellow citizens," Iowa GOP chairman Jeff Kaufmann said Monday. Earlier in the week, Kaufmann had expressed that the party was prepared for an "absolute avalanche of people."
According to CBS News entrance polls conducted Monday, first-time caucus-goers made up a slightly larger fraction of the voting body compared to four years ago.
Real estate mogul and reality television star Donald Trump, whose star power has drawn thousands to his packed campaign rallies, also attracted the most first-time caucus attendees -- about 31 percent. Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Iowa's declared winner, drew 22 percent of the first-time caucusers, while Florida Sen. Marco Rubio garnered 21 percent.
While Democrats did not set any records for the voters caucusing in Iowa, the party still touted Monday's numbers as "one of our strongest turnouts ever."
According to a statement from Iowa Democratic Party chair Andy McGuire, just over 171,000 Iowa Democrats showed up to caucus for their chosen candidate,
"We saw passionate, engaged Iowans turn out in all 99 counties," McGuire said. "I want to congratulate all of our candidates for running terrific campaigns and thank them for taking the time to travel across our great state to share their visions for the country."
This year's voter turnout fell short of the 240,000 or so that caucused in 2008, when then-Sen. Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and John Edwards were competing for the Democratic nomination.
CBS News entrance polls revealed that 44 percent of Democratic attendees were first time caucus-goers. Sanders trumped Clinton, 59 percent to 37 percent, among this group. In 2008, Obama only won 41 percent of those attending their first caucus.