Iowa caucus voters in 2016 casting their ballots in a high school gymnasium. Photo: Samuel Corum/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Democrats in Iowa and Nevada will be able to vote over the phone instead of showing up at traditional caucus meetings next February, according to state-party plans reported by AP's Michelle Price and Tom Beaumont.

Context: The tele-caucus systems, the result of a DNC mandate, are aimed at opening the local-level political gatherings to more people, especially evening shift-workers and people with disabilities.

Why it matters: The changes are expected to boost voter participation, presenting a new opportunity for 2020 candidates.

  • In Iowa, polls show as many as 20% of Democrats will participate virtually.

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