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Thursday, July 7, 2022

Why MN Dems are bidding for earlier presidential primaries – and what’s standing in their way

Why Mn Dems Are Bidding For Earlier Presidential Primaries - And What'S Standing In Their Way

To the soundtrack of Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy,” a group of leading Democrats from Minnesota paraded in front of the National Party on Thursday to argue for allowing the state to reschedule its presidential primary to become one of the first in the nation.

Placing Minnesota in the company—or perhaps ousting—Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina could bring unprecedented national attention, political activism, and money to the state, possibly starting in 2024.

But for something to change, the state Republican Party must agree, and so far they have been silent, although some Republicans from Minnesota have expressed their support for the idea.

On Wednesday, Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan, Attorney General Keith Ellison, Secretary of State Steve Simon, Rep. Angie Craig and Democratic Farm Labor Party Chairman Ken Martin traveled to Washington, D.C. to try to persuade the Democratic National Committee of the Committee on Rules and bylaws that Gopher State, in their presentation, is the “North Star of Democracy,” a diverse and engaged constituency that should serve as the Midwest’s first testing ground for presidential candidates.

That’s why all this is happening.

Iowa Regrets

Minnesota is currently holding its presidential primaries on “Super Tuesday”, the first Tuesday in March, along with 14 other states.

For decades, Iowa was the first state in the nation to begin weeding out a field of presidential candidates. But Hawkeye State, once hailed as the flagship in the heart of the country, has lost its luster in recent years – to Democrats.

The state’s predominantly white — and increasingly Republican — electorate was already causing concern as the 2020 campaign season rolled around, as was Iowa’s close-ballot system. But the final straw may have been the infamous problems with the Iowa Democratic Party’s caucuses that year, which left everyone in the dark about the actual results for several days.

The DNC decided it wanted to shake up its calendar, and there were signs that Iowa could no longer be the first state.

This opened the floodgates, with Minnesota among the 14 states, with Puerto Rico applying for the party’s blessing to be one of the first – meaning it’s not clear what the DNC would ultimately want, though there were indications that the party would like to see a mix of geographic regions represented in the first states.

This is where Minnesota comes in: a potential flag bearer for the Midwest.

CASE OF MINNESOTA

The case brought forward by the Minnesota team on Thursday was basically this: we have an ultra-high voter turnout, we are more like a battlefield than we are often credited with, and, oh yes, we are actually not that white.

“We are going to dissuade you of two things,” Martin told the committee. “Firstly, we are just a bunch of Scandinavians with no diversity. And the second is that we are not a competitive state.”

World Nation News Desk
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