What is the process by which states and parties set presidential votes?

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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Even before President Joe Biden told Democrats his preference For the reordering of the presidential primary calendar, states started to balk.

Iowa was the leading voting state for over 40 years and officials noted that a state law required that Iowa’s caucuses be held at least eight days prior to any other nominating contest. New Hampshire has been the location of the first in-the-nation primaries for over a century. According to state law, its presidential primary must be held by at least one week.

The rule-making arm, however, of the Democratic National Committee was still in operation on Dec. 2. approved a revamped schedule Early votes are required for the 2024 presidential election. First, South Carolina. Next, New Hampshire and Nevada. Then, Georgia. Finally, Michigan.

Although states may pass laws in an attempt to inform other states about their rights and obligations, such laws do not have any force. Any state could enact a law saying it must vote first — without it binding elsewhere.

What happens when state law conflicts with national party leaders’ views on voting order? Or, the state will risk losing its delegates to the national nominating total.

WHY ALL THE CHANGES NOW

The DNC is currently reviewing the calendar and has been planning it for years. The party has been discussing the possibility of placing more diverse states ahead of largely white states, and moving away from the complicated and time-consuming caucus process.

What was key to the acceleration of the changes was debacle of the 2020 Iowa caucuses.

A new smartphone app that was supposed to calculate and report the results failed. The party could not report final results for almost a week due to the backlog. The reporting of the results was so inconsistent and irregular that there were many inconsistencies. The Associated Press was unable to declare a winner, However, Pete Buttigieg who was a former mayor for South Bend, Indiana and is now Biden’s transportation secretary, finished tied with Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Before moving on, Biden was fourth in Iowa and fifth overall in New Hampshire. win the nomination after a dominant performance in South CarolinaThis was the first state with a majority Black Democratic base. This victory won Biden a clear victory in other states, elevating him from the crowded field.

South Carolina’s vault to the first place would make it a leader in 2024.

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WHAT SAY THE STATES?

Since the chaos of 2020, Iowa was in fear of losing its leadoff slot.

Scott Brennan, former Iowa Democratic Chair, was a member on the DNC committee, which considered the 2024 calendar. He voted against the changes in the order of states. He said they would “certainly favor front-runners and billionaire vanity candidates” by not including early-voting states in the center of the country.

New Hampshire’s delegation has long threatened to defy Democratic rules and hold its primary first anyway. A state law passed in the 1970s requires that its presidential primary be held first, laying out the purpose as to “protect the tradition of the New Hampshire first-in-the-nation presidential primary.” It also gives the secretary of state the exclusive power to set the primary date.

New Hampshire Democrats were ready to oppose the national party when they heard about the revised calendar plan. “We will always hold the first in the nation primary, and this status is independent of the president’s proposal or any political organization,” said Sen. Maggie Hassan.

Since 2008, Nevada was the first West-based state to vote. Last year, Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak signed a law changing the contest from a party-run, in-person caucus to a government-run primary election, to be held on the first Tuesday in February in a presidential election year — or, for 2024, on Feb. 6.

While Nevada officials had hoped this would lead to the state’s holding the new first-in-the-nation status, it will still hold significant prominence, especially with early voting beginning on Jan. 27.

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WHAT HAPPENS IF STATES DO NOT GO ALONG THE NATIONAL PLAYYY?

There are some possible penalties for states who defy DNC. This includes refusing to sit delegates at the national convention from any country that has held its votes out-of-order.

It happened in 2008. In 2008, Florida and Michigan had voting contests before they were on the calendars of both parties. The National Republicans expelled half the delegates from the US. Democrats removed both states’ delegates from the national convention, although the DNC ultimately voted to seat all of the delegates, awarding half a vote to each.

Four years later, Florida, New Hampshire and Nevada had scheduled their contests in the same window. The early window was only then available to Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina. However, all except Nevada moved their votes into January. The leaders of national parties penalized the rogue state by removing half their delegates.

Candidates could be penalized directly by the parties, possibly by being denied prime speaking slots at national conventions. David Moore, University of New Hampshire’s political scientist, stated that he doubts the consequences would be severe enough not to prevent states like New Hampshire defying the calendar.

“I don’t know right now how committed the Democratic Party is to penalizing Iowa and New Hampshire if they go rogue,” he said.

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WHAT ABOUT REPUBLICANS?

Already, the Republican National Committee has made it clear that Iowa will remain its first presidential contest. Potential GOP hopefuls have been waiting for months. making trips As the field starts to form.

RNC members voted unanimously for New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada to remain in the early voting window.

South Carolina’s parties, and not its lawmakers, set primary dates, so Democrats have no concern of their 2024 voting date being held up by the GOP-controlled Legislature.

No date has been set for Georgia’s GOP presidential preference primary in 2024.

Gabriel Sterling is a senior official in the Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s office, which has sole responsibility to set primary dates. Sterling said the agency “has been telling Democrats for over a year that we will do nothing that would require having two dates” for the parties’ primaries. He said that because of the national GOP’s calendar, holding Georgia’s Republican primary before March 1 “would cut their delegate count in half.”

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This report was contributed by Michelle L. Price, New York, and Christina A. Cassidy, Atlanta.

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Meg Kinnard can be reached at http://twitter.com/MegKinnardAP

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