Iowa political leaders react to DNC primary changes

Published: Apr. 14, 2022 at 11:08 PM CDT
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - Iowa may no longer be first in the presidential primary process after a decision made by the Democratic National Committee on Wednesday.

In a vote, party leaders changed their primary calendar opening up the process for up to five states to get their say before Super Tuesday in 2024.

The party will favor what it calls “Diverse Battleground” states with primaries, not caucuses. This threatens the Iowa Democrats’ first in the nation status as a caucus is required by state law.

Traditionally Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina are the first four states for both parties.

Scott County Democratic Party Chair, Matt Trimble said Iowa is the best state for a candidate to start their campaign.

“Iowa is an affordable place to launch a campaign to get real talent in,” Trimble said. “You can even have a grassroots campaign without encouraging giant outside donors, as has been the case for many Democratic candidates.”

In a statement the Iowa Democratic Party Chair, Ross Wilburn agreed with Trimble.

Reaching across the aisle, according to Iowa GOP Chair Jeff Kaufmann, the first four traditional stats will keep their positions on the Republican primary calendar.

He said Democrats will be in trouble if they don’t put Iowa first.

“Why in the world, would you give up on an entire section of the country?” Kaufmann said. “When that entire section is exactly where you have issues, and where you have problems.”

With Iowa Republicans keeping their first in the nation status, Kaufmann said he hopes Iowa Democrats can keep their spot too.

“Even if there’s a political advantage to me being able to say that they ... tossed Iowa overboard,” Kaufmann said. “I don’t want to be able to say that. Because I think the state is going to be stronger if we go together.”

At the end of the day, Trimble said Iowans’ problems represent America’s problems.

“The things that we’re fighting for, those issues … don’t know a party,” Trimble said. “They don’t know a state... Everyone’s facing that. "

Democratic state parties have until Jun 3 to submit their waiver to be first. The Rules Committee will then decide on an order in July with final approval happening by September.

The Scott County Republican Party did not return TV6 News’ request for comment.

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