Jun 15, 2022 - Politics

Washington Democrats seek earlier presidential primary

Illustration of a pattern of blue checkmarks.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Local Democrats are trying to make the case that Washington state should host one of the nation’s first presidential primary elections in 2024 — perhaps before Iowa or New Hampshire.

Why it matters: The states that vote first in presidential primaries have an outsized effect on the trajectory of campaigns.

  • Voters in early primary states wield more influence than those in states where primaries are held later, by which point many presidential candidates may have already dropped out.

What's happening: Washington's Democratic Party is one of 17 state party organizations that will make a formal pitch next week in Washington, D.C. about why their respective states should be first in line to vote.

What's next: The Democratic National Committee's Rules and Bylaws Committee will decide which states should move on to the next stage of the selection process.

  • A final decision is expected by early August.

What they're saying: Tina Podlodowski, who chairs the Washington State Democrats, said in a news release that Washington would be an excellent choice for an early Democratic primary partly because of the state's diversity.

  • In recent years, some within the Democratic Party have criticized Iowa and New Hampshire as not being racially diverse enough to kick off the party's nomination process, The New York Times reported.

The other side: Democratic leaders in other states, including Nevada, say their states' diversity makes them ideal choices, too.

Of note: Top Democratic politicians in Washington state, including Gov. Jay Inslee, Secretary of State Steve Hobbs and several members of Congress, are supporting the state's bid for an earlier primary.


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