Feb 24, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Nevada Democratic Party says it will look to move away from caucus system

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Nevada State Democratic Party chair William McCurdy II said in a statement Monday that the party will look to move to a primary system in future elections instead of caucuses.

Why it matters: Caucus systems for voting have come under increased scrutiny after the Iowa Democratic caucuses were plagued by software errors and inconsistencies in the results, culminating in the resignation of the state party's chair. Nevada's caucuses on Saturday were comparatively successful, but still faced some questions about the accuracy of the results.

What they're saying: McCurdy praised the thousands of volunteers who participated on Saturday, but said that it's time to discuss "the limitations of the caucus process and the rules around it."

  • "If our goal is to bring as many Nevada Democrats as possible into the fold to select our presidential nominee, it's time for our State Party and elected leaders to look at shifting to a primary process moving forward."

The big picture: Former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), the functional head of the Nevada Democrats, said Sunday that "it's time for the Democratic Party to move to primaries everywhere." He also called for Nevada to replace Iowa going forward as the first state to vote in the Democratic primary.

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Harry Reid calls for the Democratic Party to end caucuses

Harry Reid after voting in the Nevada Democratic presidential caucus in Las Vegas. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said in a statement to news outlets Sunday "it's time for the Democratic Party to move to primaries everywhere" and ditch the caucus system.

Why it matters: Reid remains the functional head of the Nevada Democrats. He's also "responsible for Nevada's caucuses occupying the third slot on the Democrats’ presidential nominating calendar," the New York Times notes.

Joe Biden places second in Nevada caucuses, ahead of Pete Buttigieg

Joe Biden at a Nevada Caucus watch party in Las Vegas on Saturday. Photo: Ronda Churchill/AFP via Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden secured second place in the Nevada Democratic caucuses with former Southbend Mayor Pete Buttigieg third, according to NBC News projections Sunday.

Why it matters: It's a boost for Biden, who's expected to be endorsed by House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) on Wednesday, ahead of this week's South Carolina primary.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Feb 24, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus crisis forces states to prioritize mail-in ballots

Some voters wore gloves to cast early ballots Saturday in Chicago. Photo: Noreen Nasir/AP

Mail-in ballots are becoming states' saving grace for their 2020 primary contests as the coronavirus crisis deepens in the U.S.

Why it matters: Amid CDC guidance that gatherings shouldn't exceed 50 people, the states voting today — Arizona, Florida and Illinois — all have multiple confirmed cases of the illness and are pushing citizens to consider their mail-in options.